The Tennessee Titans have been at the center of a whirlwind of controversy over the last two weeks.
The players been slammed by anybody and everybody for allegedly violating coronavirus protocol by hosting an unauthorized practice following news of the first positive test in the organization after their Week 3 game against the Minnesota Vikings. That decision may have aggravated the situation as more positive tests emerged this past week, putting the status of their Week 5 game agains the Buffalo Bills in question after their Week 4 game had to be postponed.
The NFL and NFLPA is investigating the situation as it develops. For now, the waters seem to have settled as Saturday marked the second consecutive day of all negative tests for members of the Titans organization. Players and coaches spoke to the media for the first time since it all began today, and safety Kevin Byard had an... interesting view on the criticism he and his teammates have faced this week.
I'm just going to go ahead and say it: this shouldn't be used as freaking bulletin board material. Finding motivation in even the smallest of slights is apparently a package deal with being a professional athlete, but it's usually comments like "So-and-so can't keep this up" or "This team doesn't belong here" or whatever. This is different!
Nobody is saying the Titans don't deserve to be 3-0. They are, fairly, saying that the Titans were being irresponsible if they held a practice after receiving news one of their teammates tested positive. That's not exactly a "nobody believes in us" narrative that teams like the Patriots love to employ on a yearly basis.
Now, in the very unlikely possibility the Titans did not have the practice everybody in the NFL space is currently assuming happened, then Byard has a point. But from everything we know, that practice definitely happened, and it was a decision that could have had catastrophic aftereffects.
This is not unjust criticism to be used as a chip on every Titans' shoulder. They would prove nothing by treating it as such, even if they won the damn Super Bowl. No one is questioning the Titans' ability, only their decision-making. And that is not bulletin board material.