At one point, Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan thought about opting-out of the 2020 season. 

“I definitely took some hard thought about the whole situation,” Trevathan said. “I had to see it first-hand, so I came in and I feel like they did a pretty good job handling the situation.”

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It's been a recurring theme among players and coaches when asked about the team's COVID-19 testing protocols. A thorough (and lengthy) process has been put in place in order to keep everyone safe, but at the end of the day – quite literally, in fact – protecting one another is an individual mandate. The hours spent away from Halas Hall are, as Trevathan put it, "when you really have to be a pro." 

"We have to govern ourselves," he said. "Everybody’s gotta be accountable, everybody’s gotta be responsible and think about the next man’s family as well as yours. Because you don’t want anybody coming in there sick and then you end up getting sick and you take it back home to your family." 

Personal accountability is crucial, but the drastically different daily experience at Halas also goes a long way towards reminding everyone what's at stake. Masks are required at all hours (a rule enforceable by anyone, to anyone) in the building. The player's lounge and cafeteria buffet are gone; there are even assigned seats. Safety is constantly on everyone's mind, and that's probably by design. 

 

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"To be honest with you, you never know whether we’re going to have a season or not," Trevathan said. "All you can do is be prepared and take care of yourself. The vibe’s been pretty well. The guys are concerned about it ... when you’re worried about it, you take it more seriously and you’re on top of guys." 

So far, the biggest issue for Trevathan has been the limited hours that players can be in the building. "I like to get here to work early," he said. "But you can’t really go in right now because you’ve got to get tested first and then you have to go in the building." And besides that?

"Shoot, I don’t like getting stuff in my nose," he added. "That’s a very weird feeling."