The Kansas City NFL team players and coaches stand behind striker Laurent Duverne-Tardiff, who has decided to skip the upcoming season to continue providing cutting edge assistance in the fight against COVID-19.
The team’s head coach, Andy Reid, said at a press conference on Saturday that he was proud of the Quebec-born Super Bowl champion.
“I’m a big fan of Larry Duverney-Tardiff. I was also raised by a doctor, so I understand the dedication it takes to become a doctor. We are all blessed to have doctors in our lives, ”Reid said.
The 29-year-old student from Mont Saint-Hilaire, Quebec, received his medical degree from McGill University and began working in a long-term care facility in Quebec as a companion patient in April, less than three months after winning the Super Bowl.
At the time, Quebec’s long-term care facilities, known as CHSLDs, were critically understaffed as the coronavirus spread rapidly across the network.
The provincial government pleaded with Quebecers from all walks of life to volunteer in the institutions to provide basic assistance to residents, many of whom had long lived without food or water.
About 4,000 people have died in Quebec’s CHSLDs due to the virus, and thousands of health workers have become infected.
Duvernay-Tardif ‘also supports teammates
Reid said the rest of the team also supports Duvernay-Tardif’s decision to continue working as a patient companion.
“The veteran players support him and the coaches support him. We know … when football is over, it will be one of the best doctors in history, ”Reid said.
Defender Patrick Magomes said that while he was surprised by the decision, he understands why his teammate made the choice he made.
“I know it was difficult for him, but you respect this decision because he kind of puts his thoughts aside and does what he thinks best helps his community and the world as he sees it,” said Magomes at the press conference on Saturday.
Ultimately, Duvernay-Tardiff decided that if he took the risk of COVID-19 it would be while working with patients, not playing football, agent Sasha Gavami said.
“I’m not worried about him. He will be in shape and ready to return. He is a great athlete and very dedicated to his approach. ” Gavami said.
The 2020 NFL season is currently slated to kick off on September 10.