The NFL announced Wednesday that Sunday’s game between the Tennessee Titans and the Pittsburgh Steelers is postponed after at least nine members of the Titans tested positive for coronavirus, marking the league’s first breakout since the season began Sept. 10.
The NFL issued a statement confirming the news just a day after the Titans suspended all in-person activities following a number of positive cases.
“The Steelers-Titans game, originally scheduled for Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, will be rescheduled to allow additional time for further daily COVID-19 testing and to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel,” the statement read.
The NFL has considered rescheduling the Week 4 matchup as early as Monday or Tuesday but it will be contingent on the test results.
It was revealed on Tuesday that three Titans’ players and five team personnel tested positive after playing the Minnesota Vikings over the weekend.
“Both clubs are working closely with the NFL and the NFLPA, including our infectious disease experts, to evaluate close contacts, perform additional testing and monitor developments,” the NFL said in a statement.
On Wednesday morning, another player on the Titans had tested positive while the Vikings reported no positive cases, according to the NFL Network.
The outbreak prompted Commissioner Roger Goodell to send a memo to teams on Tuesday urging them to follow the protocols set up by the league and the players union.
“This is not unexpected; as Dr. Sills and others have emphasized, there will be players and staff who will test positive during the season,” Goodell wrote in the memo obtained by The Associated Press, referencing the NFL’s chief medical officer, Dr. Allen Sills.
“We are exploring in more detail the nature of the close contacts to determine where they occurred (locker room, flights, etc.), and identify any additional learnings that can be shared with all clubs.”
Goodell asked teams to look at what they’ve done to limit contact, especially when traveling and within position groups, and to review how they bring in players for tryouts. He noted the test results affirm the need to follow health and safety protocols “to the fullest extent.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.