By: Chandler Hubert
The NFL entered the 2020-2021 season with several new rules to adhere to the CDC’s COVID-19 guidelines. One of which is coaches must wear masks on the sidelines. Despite this rule, three NFL head coaches refused to wear a mask on the sidelines resulting in heavy fines.
In addition to preventing the spread of the coronavirus, the mask also benefits head coaches in blocking their mouths during play calls. Before this season you could typically see coaches on the sidelines covering their mouths with just about anything to prevent the other team from getting a preview of their plays – their hands, clipboards, you name it. Yet when it comes to a pandemic, three coaches choose to have their mouths and noses exposed. When the game is on the line coaches block their mouths so a play cannot be stolen. When the world and individuals’ health are on the line, their mouths and noses are in full view.
The NFL is pushing for the importance of coaches wearing masks by fining $100,000 to a coach violating this new rule and $250,000 to their team. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Denver Broncos’ Vic Fangio, Seattle Seahwak’s Pete Carroll, and San Francisco 49er’s Kyle Shanahan were each fined after their weekend’s games.
With many more weeks to come we will see how coaches respond and if the large fine is enough to enforce masks being worn.