Skip navigation
Sign up to follow your favorites on all your devices.
Sign up

As Bucs get another mini-bye, Bruce Arians worries about COVID

Tom Brady caps off a nine-play, 94-yard drive with a quick pass to Chris Godwin over the middle as the Tampa Bay Bucs open the 2021 NFL season with a touchdown and take an early 7-0 lead over the Dallas Cowboys.

One of the benefits of playing on the first Thursday night of the season comes from the immediate mini-bye before Week Two. Plenty of coaches likes that. This year, Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians doesn’t.

“I’m not real fond of it,” he told reporters after the 31-29 win over Dallas. “But there’s four days off [after the final preseason game] and playing here now [we] have three days off. I’m more concerned about the COVID than I am the football team.”

Vaccinated players (the Bucs are at 100 percent) have full freedom of movement, and with the three days off they’ll be allowed to leave town.

Actually, given the prevalence of the infection in Tampa, maybe they should leave town. Regardless, Arians and the rest of the organization will now have to worry about the possibility that one or more players will test positive.

The Buccaneers host the Falcons in nine days, before traveling to L.A. for a game against the Rams.