Super Bowl Winning Football Player Turned Doctor Tackles COVID-19

Super Bowl LIV - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs

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A Super Bowl champion offensive lineman is taking the shove to the fight against coronavirus.

Kansas City Chiefs' right guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif is the first medical doctor play in the NFL. 

After he and his girlfriend returned home to Montreal, Canada from their Super Bowl celebration vacation, Tardif turned in his helmet for a face mask - volunteering to help COVID-19 patients at a long-term care facility about an hour away.

Before he was allowed in to help, they made him take a crash course to review the basics on how to protect himself and others. His first day of business was April 24.

"I felt nervous the night before, but a good nervous, like before a game, and I packed everything neatly: scrubs, white coat, extra pens, even a second pair of shoes that I could leave in my locker, knowing they were clean," Duvernay-Tardif writes. 

Tardif is working as a nurse since he hasn't yet completed residency and doesn't have his license.

"It's wild to think that just 10 weeks earlier I played in the biggest game in sports," he said. Duvernay-Tardif even admits that some people have recognized him as a football player.

Playing in the Super Bowl vs. heading back to the medical system during a pandemic is totally different. Back in February, I knew that 100 million-plus people were going to be watching, and I wanted to win," Duvernay-Tardif said. "When you're going in to help it's more about your duty as a doctor and a citizen. It's not the time to be the hero and be impulsive. You've gotta do it the right way. You've gotta really take this seriously when it comes to washing your hands, not touching anything."

Duvernay-Tardif is committed to this fight and helping where he can until it's time for him to go back to football whenever it is safe to do so.

"It's too soon to say when sports might come back. Or what that might look like. What I can say is if we're not playing in September, knowing all the implications of what sport means for a nation and the money behind this huge industry, there are going to be bigger issues than not playing football," he said. 

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