1 day I'll add a second Lombardi to my pic. 1 day.
- Jun 22, 2002
- Reaction score
The Saints are creating a bubble. Look around. See the landscape. Baseball, not in a bubble, might be on the verge of collapsing. Basketball, in a bubble, looks smart and might play to the title cleanly. Football, with Matthew Stafford sidelined in the COVID protocol, goes “Hmmmmm.” The Saints are trying to do something about it. The organization is inventing a semi-bubble. Beginning Wednesday, the team has contracted with the Loews Hotel to rent four floors of the fashionable borderline French Quarter hotel, so that most of the team’s 100 Tier 1 and 2 employees (all but some of the team doctors, cafeteria workers and security people) and many of the players would be able to quasi-quarantine in the luxe hotel till opening day. “It’s not a bubble,” coach Sean Payton told me Saturday night. “It’s a sequester. The message from the league is, ‘The show must go on.’ If so, we’ve got to do everything we can to be sure that happens.” The Saints have about 180 employees including Tier 1 (coaches, GM, personnel people), 2 (facilities, doctors, support staff) and players (80).
The team is fortunate; through the first round of testing—three tests per player—the team had zero positive tests. But Payton knows that might not last. He thinks about 150 of the 180 team employees/players will end up in the hotel through the first week of September. No one will be forced to stay. Payton equates it to coaching, trying to figure a way to limit the number of positive tests so the Saints have the best chance to play, and to win. “Isn’t that what we do for a living?” he said. “It’s like creating a game plan with a likelihood of success. We’re just trying to increase the odds of success.”
No word on which of the vets will do the personal quarantining, thought I’ve heard linebacker and team leader Demario Davis is in favor of moving to the hotel till the season starts. In all, there are about 40 veterans who will have to choose whether to stay home or sequester at the Loews. This gives the Saints a better chance than most teams to stay clear, but not a perfect chance.
FMIA: After Two Early Playoff Exits, Lamar Jackson Enters 2020 On A Mission: 'I'm Tired Of Going Home' - ProFootballTalk
Peter King's Football Morning In America column begins with Ravens QB Lamar Jackson reflecting on playoff losses and what to expect in 2020.