Sandringham head coach Josh Bourke has called for unity throughout the Dragons community as the effects of coronavirus are felt.
While maintaining the issue extends beyond the realms of football, Bourke emphasised the importance of the playing group keeping connected.
“The reality is there’s a far, far bigger picture than footy,” he said.
“But that said, at the age of 17, 18, 19, footy is probably number one, two and three in your life.
“There’s part of me that’s quite empathetic to the players and concerned with their mental health, so staying connected has certainly been a message I sent out last night.
“Our ability to stay together, even remotely, is going to be really important.”
Despite the unprecedented times, Bourke also suggested players are presented with a unique opportunity to self-improve.
“Probably the one certainty for everyone involved in the NAB League system is there’ll be a draft,” he said.
“Your ability to stay focused and engaged and your ability to self-manage is going to be paramount, that may decide your capacity to get drafted.
“Can you stay fit, stay healthy? All of that stuff.”
While the Dragons won’t train for the foreseeable future, players are set to prioritise football education, as well as strength and conditioning and individual craft.
Bourke has left the playing group with two key messages.
“One we care, we’re thinking about you, we’re concerned about you,” he said.
“And two, do what you can in a very, very challenging time to improve your game, which is not easy.
“We are empathetic, and we care for you.”