The COVID-19 pandemic has had impacts far and wide throughout the NFL this season. And while it hasn’t directly impacted the Bears’ active roster, Chicago’s upcoming opponent is without a key player this weekend.
Saints receiver Emmanuel Sanders won’t play this weekend because his on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Since testing positive a week ago, Sanders went on Uninterrupted “17 Weeks” podcast to share some raw and honest thoughts about living with COVID-19. And frankly, they’re worth sharing because they provide a deeper perspective on something that is impacting a great many people.
“Every night I go to sleep I’m like, ‘Lord, please let me wake up in the morning feeling good. Like, I don’t want to wake up in the middle of the night and like, can’t breathe. And like, shit just goes south, right? That’s like my biggest fear in watching that shit, it intensifies my fears, right? Because people can say whatever you want and everybody could say, ‘Oh yeah, I’m not scared to get COVID.’ But in the back of your head, and you may think you’re healthy but in the back of your head, you don’t know this virus. Nobody knows anything about this virus. You don’t know how your body’s gonna react and you don’t know at any moment, like if shit will go south, right?”
It’s sobering to read this coming from Sanders, a 33-year-old receiver who is in peak physical condition playing a demanding position at a high level. Elsewhere in the podcast, Sanders discusses how he wasn’t feeling well, that he had a lost a sense of taste (which is a symptom of coronavirus), how his wife tested also tested positive, and that their children – who didn’t contract the virus – are quarantining away from their parents. Admittedly, it’s a lot to take in. But again, it’s good because it shows the realities of the virus.
Sanders will miss a minimum of two games. He’ll follow the NFL’s protocols as he tries to return to action, and has no quibbles about doing so. Because, as Sanders puts it, COVID-19 is “way bigger than football.”