Patrick Peterson wants to play football because he’s a football player.
Much more than that will go into his decision-making when it’s time to return from the coronavirus shutdown.
The Cardinals cornerback was diagnosed with Type Two diabetes in 2014, and he said that will weigh on his mind when it’s time to go back to work.
“If I feel that if that’s the safest thing possible for us to be able to come back to work, I’m all-in,” Peterson said, via Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com. “But if it’s not, obviously I have to make — not I, we all have to make a very, very smart decision because you don’t want to have the opportunity to bringing that back home.
“So, that’s the biggest thing we [can] do is make sure that we’re smart. I know the NFL is doing everything that they can, but it’s just so tough to put a finger on it on how to evolve around this virus.”
Protocols including temperature checks and masks and gloves are part of what he’s thinking, since his condition puts him at greater risk of serious complications from COVID-19. He’s also had a different perspective this offseason, since his wife Antonique is doing her residency for medical school in a Phoenix-area intensive care unit.
He said having her in that environment has been “very, very stressful” and “emotionally draining.”
“[It] is extremely difficult dealing with some of the situations that she has to deal with,” he said. “But with her being a doctor, she’s definitely been on top of everything that she needs to be on top of as far as being safe with the masks, doing everything that she needs to do to make sure that she doesn’t bring it home.”
That’s important since they have two children, a 4-year-old and a newborn, which has caused Antonique to have her own “locker room” when she comes home, where she changes out of her work clothes and showers.
“The advice that she’s given us as a household is definitely social distance is, by far, No. 1,” Peterson said. “And just making sure that all surfaces that you touch or [are] going to be around is clean and making sure that you wash [your] hands as much as possible so you just have to make sure you do your part to understand the [gravity] this virus has and how it can affect not only your life but the people around you as well.
“So, you just have to be smart and just hopefully this deal will roll over and we can come back to some normal lifestyle.”
Getting there won’t be easy, and will require many steps that will make some uncomfortable. But for people like Peterson with underlying conditions, it’s necessary.
Patrick Peterson’s diabetes gives him different perspective on COVID-19 originally appeared on Pro Football Talk