Patriots' Cam Newton calls Stephon Gilmore contracting COVID 'worst nightmare'

Cassandra Negley
·3 min read

Cam Newton is known for spending long hours at the practice facility during the season. Usually that’s a good thing. When he found out his COVID-19 test came back positive, though, it created a nightmare.

Newton joined Greg Hill of WEEI on Monday and said of anyone on the New England Patriots roster, he was the one to have a “red flag” given how many people he’s around. He initially thought the test might be a false positive, and said he doesn’t know how he contracted the disease.

Newton: Biggest scare was spreading COVID

“I think the biggest scare here for everybody was just my, I guess, daily routine of how many hours I put in the facility,” Newton said on WEEI (H/T USA Today Sports). “And if I contracted it, if anybody who would have had a red flag, I think it would have been me. Here’s a person who’s here as long as he is. Who was he around? Who did he touch? Things like that. And I was more concerned about it, because I didn’t want to put nobody else on the team in jeopardy for this.”

Newton was placed on the league’s COVID-19/reserve list on Oct. 3, the day before the Sunday slate of Week 4 games. The Patriots’ game against the Kansas City Chiefs was pushed back a day to Monday.

Stephon Gilmore testing positive ‘worst nightmare’

Days later cornerback Stephon Gilmore, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, announced he tested positive.

“The fact that Steph [Gilmore] contracted it was my worst nightmare being that I would never want to sabotage anything to the slightest degree, because I know what we have the capability of becoming,” Newton said. “And yet, through it all, we saw it and got a better understanding of it.”

Six other Patriots players have been on the COVID-19/reserve list since the game against the Chiefs. Teams around the league have shuttered their facilities upon learning of positive tests, but there were no new scheduling changes in Week 6.

Newton: Sky is falling, but I’ve got my umbrella

Stephon Gilmore prepares to shake hands with Cam Newton during a game.
Cam Newton and Stephon Gilmore were placed on the COVID-19/reserve list. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Newton returned for the Week 6 game, but he and the offense struggled in a 18-12 loss to the Denver Broncos following the off week. They had only one full practice together because positive tests forced the organization to shut its facility down.

It’s the first time since 2001 (Tom Brady’s first year as a starter) the Patriots are 2-3.

“The sky may be falling for the next couple of days,” Newton, 31, said. “Listen, I’ll bring my umbrella, my raincoat and everything else that I need to get the job done. I know we will get the job done [and] here moving forward we’ll have more production in a positive way.”

The Patriots are scheduled to host the San Francisco 49ers at Gillette Stadium on Sunday.

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