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Saints and Pelicans owner Gayle Benson tests positive for COVID-19

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Gayle Benson, owner of the New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans, has tested positive for COVID-19.

The New Orleans Times-Picayune first reported that Benson, 73, had tested positive, which was confirmed by Saints senior vice president of communications Greg Bensel. Benson tested positive in the last few weeks, and Bensel told the Times-Picayune that she’s under daily medical care and recovering well. Bensel did not reveal whether Benson was suffering from any symptoms.

Both the Saints and Pelicans released the same statement about Benson’s COVID-19 diagnosis.

Benson is the second NFL owner to test positive for COVID-19. Michael Bidwell, owner of the Arizona Cardinals, tested positive in July. She’s also not the first high-profile person from her own football team to test positive. Head coach Sean Payton was diagnosed in mid-March, early in the pandemic. He experienced “flu-like” symptoms but has since made a full recovery.

Several other Saints players have tested positive since the start of training camp in late July, but the Times-Picayune reported that they’re now believed to be false positives.

Gayle Benson smiles during a football game.
Saints and Pelicans owner Gayle Benson, 73, has been diagnosed with COVID-19. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

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