Offensive guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif went from aiding the Kansas City Chiefs in their run to the Super Bowl to assisting at a long-term care facility near Montreal in a little over 2 1/2 months.
Duvernay-Tardif, who holds a doctorate in medicine, shared his experience for Sports Illustrated -- including an assignment last week while the world continues its battle with the coronavirus pandemic. It marked a vastly different scene for Duvernay-Tardif, who cut short his vacation of sailing around the Caribbean.
"I had only wanted to get away, and then I wished I had never left. Soon into the crisis I started to ask how I could help," Duvernay-Tardif said.
Duvernay-Tardif said he received no resistance from the Chiefs after telling them of his intentions to help. He then went on a crash course to prepare for his next assignment.
"My first day back in the hospital was (Friday)," Duvernay-Tardif said. "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 said his current job is "more of a nursing role" as he relieves tired workers. He noted that there has been one positive test for the coronavirus at the facility.
The 29-year-old noted how quickly life has changed since the Chiefs recorded a 31-20 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Feb. 2.
"It's wild to think that just 10 weeks earlier I played in the biggest game in sports," Duvernay-Tardif said. "I was reminded of that even at the facility, when one of the people training me turned and said, 'You're the football player, right?' When I answered yes, he said, 'Bro, you just won the Super Bowl.' Indeed, I told him, and now I just want to help."
Duvernay-Tardif has played in 60 games (57 starts) since being selected by the Chiefs in the sixth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He pulled double duty during part of that stretch, attending McGill Medical School while also playing in the NFL.
--Field Level Media