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Shanahan says he's on-board with NFL's COVID-19 rules

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The Tennessee Titans' coronavirus outbreak this week is one of the inevitable complications involved with attempting to play an NFL season during a global pandemic.

"We're trying to pull off a season, and it's just a reminder how quick that can spread," 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Wednesday.

The NFL announced the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Titans game, scheduled for Sunday, will be postponed until Monday or Tuesday to allow for additional COVID-19 testing. Four Titans players and five of their staff members tested positive, according to reports.

"It happened to the Titans this week, and you see what happens," Shanahan said. "Once it happens, you do have to shut things down. And that is a huge deal. If we let that get out of hand, it would be very tough for our league, finishing the season."

Last week, Shanahan vowed to do a better job of following the NFL's sidelines protocols after incurring a large penalty. Pete Carroll, Jon Gruden, Vic Fangio and Sean Payton also were fined $100,000 apiece.

The NFL fined each of the coaches' teams $250,000. Shanahan and the four other coaches appealed the fines, the NFL Network reported.

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Shanahan said Wednesday that he never took off his face covering during the 49ers' 36-9 victory over the New York Giants last Sunday. It was his first game since he was fined.


"Last week was the first time that (I) did it every single play, kept it on throughout the whole game," he said. "It's not the most fun thing, as everyone realizes. But it's definitely worth it and something we need to do.

"I feel a lot safer in the games, and a lot safer in this building with us getting tested every day. We got to make sure we're extremely smart outside of here -- who we put ourselves around, with situations we put ourselves in."

The 49ers had three players -- receiver Richie James, running back Jeff Wilson Jr. and linebacker Fred Warner -- spend time on the NFL's reserve/COVID-19 before the start of the regular season.

Troy Vincent, the NFL executive vice president of football operations, sent a memo Wednesday to remind NFL teams of the agreed-upon game-day protocols which call for coaches and other non-player personnel to wear appropriate face coverings “at all times.”

The NFL warned teams that individuals who break the rules could be subject to suspensions and teams could lose future draft picks, too.

"It all makes sense to everybody, and I think everyone completely understands that, and we're pretty clear on that now," Shanahan said. "No issues at all with it."

RELATED: Shanahan vows to do 'better job' wearing mask after fines

Vincent spelled out the league's expectations in the memo to all 32 clubs.

“If we are to play a full and uninterrupted season, we all must remain committed to our efforts to mitigate the risk of transmission of the virus,” Vincent wrote.

“Inconsistent adherence to health and safety protocols, such as wearing face coverings and observing physical distancing requirements will put the 2020 season at risk.”

A previous memo was sent on Sept. 14, which warned that failure to comply with the protocols could result in fines against individuals and the clubs.