Reports: How Pats players feel about positive COVID-19 test originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The Patriots' Week 4 matchup with the Chiefs in Kansas City will be rescheduled after at least one member of each club tested positive for COVID-19.
New England announced Saturday it had one player test positive for COVID-19 on Friday night, and that player is quarterback Cam Newton, according to multiple reports.
The Patriots did contact tracing after Newton's reported positive test and have gotten all negative tests so far. According to ESPN's Dianna Russini, however, several players are still worried about contracting and/or spreading the virus.
I’m talking with some players on the Patriots over text and they are all very concerned.— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) October 3, 2020
One player “How can we play this game?”
Another player “I had it already so I am good but only a few of us have had it.”
Notable in Russini's report is that a Patriots player told her he (and others) had already had COVID-19, as New England hadn't reported any confirmed COVID-19 cases until Saturday.
It's possible that player contracted the virus and recovered before reporting to training camp in July, though.
The players' concerns are understandable, especially after an outbreak on the Titans in which a total of 16 team members have tested positive for COVID-19 since last Sunday.
Many players also live with family members they don't want to expose to the virus, a concern one Patriot brought up to NFL Media's Mike Giardi.
In exchanging texts with multiple #Patriots players, there is relief that they're not getting on a flight today but said one, "We've seen what's happened in Tennessee. It's a concern. It's scary. I don't want to bring this home to my family." @nflnetwork @AroundTheNFL— Michael Giardi (@MikeGiardi) October 3, 2020
The NFL is hoping to reschedule Sunday's Patriots-Chiefs game for Monday or Tuesday. That still would require the team boarding a flight to Kansas City, though, and the team may not be able to confirm that everyone in its traveling party doesn't have the virus.
The NFL has a COVID donut hole that daily testing can't eliminate: The incubation period between exposure and the generation of a positive test. That dynamic is currently playing out with the Titans. We'll see whether it also plays out with the Patriots and Chiefs.— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) October 3, 2020
The Titans and Pittsburgh Steelers already pushed their Week 4 matchup to later this month, so perhaps the Patriots and Chiefs will follow suit.