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The NFL transaction wire has a new, recent designation: “Reserve/COVID-19.”
The league is putting players who test positive for the coronavirus or have been quarantined because of contact with someone who has tested positive on the reserve list, and the names are on the wire.
The Buccaneers tweeted that rookie running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn, who will compete for a starting job, was put on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
Vikings announce four to reserve/COVID-19 list
The Vikings, whose athletic trainer Eric Sugarman announced a positive test earlier Monday, said four players were on the new reserve/COVID-19 list. The team previously said no players had been in contact with Sugarman.
The #Vikings have placed T Blake Brandel, S Brian Cole II, OL Tyler Higby and WR Justin Jefferson on Reserve/COVID-19.
— Minnesota Vikings (@Vikings) July 27, 2020
The Vikings’ announcement, from their public relations staff and on the team’s site, described the new list (the emphasis is from the team):
“This new reserve list category was created for a player who either tests positive for COVID-19 or who has been quarantined after having been in close contact with an infected person or persons. If a player falls into either of these categories, their club is required to immediately place the player on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Per agreed upon NFL-NFLPA policy, clubs are not permitted to comment on player's medical status other than referring to roster status. Clubs may not disclose whether player is in quarantine or is positive for COVID-19.”
Teams can’t confirm why players are on list
It seems contradictory that a team can’t disclose whether a player is in quarantine or is positive for COVID-19, yet there’s a COVID-19 reserve list for players and the names are announced by teams.
That seems to be the process the NFL will use. We know that Jefferson and Vaughn, among others, are on the list. Jefferson, one of the best receivers in this year’s deep class, is expected to start for the Vikings this season. Tom Pelissero of NFL Media said 18 names were added to the reserve/COVID-19 list across the league on Monday, bringing the total to 24. More could be added as veterans report to camp and get tested.
Positive tests will be a story through the NFL season. As camps start, it’s already a focus.
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