Recent terror attacks in London have caught the attention of the Arizona Cardinals, who are slated to travel to England on Oct. 22 to play the Los Angeles Rams. While team members are betraying some trepidation, head coach Bruce Arians is putting on a face of good old-fashioned American determination.
“Anytime you’re apprehensive and let ISIS, or whoever it is, change the way you think or what you do, they’re winning,” he said, according to an ESPN report. “We’ll go, and we’ll go and do everything we can to put on a great show. If something happens, it happens, but it’s not going to scare us off.”
Attacks at a concert in Manchester, about 200 miles north of London, and on the London Bridge have raised concerns about “soft targets” such as those presented by an NFL game. That, in turn, has forced players to consider how much they want to expose themselves and their families to potential threats.
“I’ll be lying if I said I’m not worrying about it,” safety Antoine Bethea said. “Things have been going [on] at some big-time events and things of that nature. But, at the end of the day, I’m pretty sure everybody, the league, they’re going to take as much precaution as they’re going to take to protect the team, the staff and even the family members that are traveling over there.” Other players have indicated they’ll use caution when going out, and may avoid bringing family members altogether.
Every Super Bowl, the NFL makes a presentation indicating the depth of its security preparations for the game and surrounding events, with everything from counterfeit tickets to terrorist attacks profiled and accounted for. It’s clear, given the state of world affairs and the NFL’s popularity, that the league will need to exercise the same degree of security awareness for its London games in 2017 and beyond.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION, on sale now at Amazon or wherever books are sold. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.
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