Tyrann Mathieu is approaching the idea of NFL games without huddles with an open mind.
As COVID-19 remains a legitimate threat to any football season — either college or pro — with modified training camps set to open in July, the NFL needs to seriously consider how a game predicated on close contact might be impacted by the deadly virus.
Even an act as innocent as huddling places players at risk despite the influx of testing the NFL is sure to implement every week. Should the league break away from the act of literally passing plays from player to player, an alternative has been floated.
NFL could consider allowing speakers in all helmets, and Chiefs safety Tyrann Mathieu is all for it.
In an idea floated by Pro Football Talk, Charean Williams suggested all helmets could now include speakers, meaning coaches would be able to talk their players through certain protocol before the snap, rather than one captain spreading the directions. Tyrann Mathieu, who remains one of the top safeties in the AFC, believes he would greatly benefit from this.
As if the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs needed any more of an advantage. Mathieu was elected first-team All-Pro in 2019, recording four interceptions and falling just one pick short of his career-high. In just his first year in Kansas City, he provided the Chiefs with a vital back-end defender they’d been missing since the day Eric Berry was actually healthy.
While the NFL continues to move forward towards an as-scheduled season, they’ll have to make changes on the fly. Thus far, teams have independently moved training camps to home stadiums, rather than risk infecting certain college campuses.
Since 2008, the NFL has allowed coaches to communicate with one player on the defense, who relays that decision to the rest of the team. Given the circumstances, it could make sense to take matters a step further.