Baltimore Ravens Shut Down Facilities Until Monday After Disciplining Staffer over COVID Outbreak
Several players have reportedly tested positive on the team, prompting the NFL to postpone their Thursday game against the Pittsburgh Steelers
Following additional team members testing positive for COVID-19, the Baltimore Ravens are reportedly closing down their training facility to avoid further outbreaks.
The NFL announced on Wednesday that the Ravens' game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, originally scheduled to be held on Thursday, would be postponed until Sunday afternoon. The league said the decision was "out of an abundance of caution to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel and in consultation with medical experts."
Later on Wednesday, the team issued a statement saying they'd "disciplined a staff member for conduct surrounding the recent COVID-19 cases that have affected players and staff at the Ravens." The team did not offer a name.
According to USA Today, the Baltimore, Maryland, squad placed nine players on its COVID reserve list this week. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported on Thursday that the "Ravens are shutting their training facility until Monday at the earliest, per sources."
"We appreciate the NFL for its diligence in working closely with us to ensure the well-being of players, coaches and staff from both the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers organizations," the Ravens said in a statement Wednesday.
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"Protecting the health and safety of each team, in addition to our communities at large, is of utmost importance," the team added. "We will continue to follow guidance from the NFL and its medical experts, as we focus on safely resuming preparations for Sunday's game."
On Thursday, Ravens quarterback Robert Griffin III tweeted that he is "praying for my brother [fellow QB Lamar Jackson] and every player, staff member and their families dealing with COVID-19. Ensuring the safety of the entire organization is important."
"Handling this outbreak within the team is bigger than football," the athlete, 30, added.
After another COVID outbreak among the Ravens earlier this month, the team said the sick player "immediately began to self-quarantine." They added in a statement at the time: "In coordination with the league, we have started the process of contact tracing and are following the guidelines of intensive protocol."
"The health and safety of our players, staff and community continue to be our highest priority. We will continue to work closely with the NFL and our team doctors and will follow their guidance."
Due to the airborne transmission of COVID-19 and case spikes across the country, the CDC advises against indoor gatherings of large groups, and recommends people maintain six feet of distance and wear face coverings at all times.
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