The New England Patriots were not only fighting the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday, but also to contain the spread of Covid-19 after quarterback Cam Newton had tested positive for the novel Coronavirus over the weekend. While incubation periods and asymptomatic spread make it difficult to definitively say how that battle was and is going, the Patriots did receive some positive news recently about the situation and the team’s overall status.
According to a report by ESPN’s Dianna Russini, all of the tests that were done before the team left Kansas City last night came back negative. This makes Monday the third straight day without the Patriots having a positive test inside the organization after it was notified of Newton’s status late on Friday night. Since then, however, no teammate and coach was tested as Coronavirus-positive despite undergoing multiple screenings.
“It gave me real perspective just on what everyone in our country was going through,” safety Devin McCourty said about the experience after Monday’s 26-10 loss against the Chiefs. “I think about people who don’t have the resources and everything we had over those last three days of testing. This test, that test, multiple tests, so many people in different communities just didn’t have that. As nerve-wracking and everything thing that was going on, I think we still have a sense of security that a lot of people didn’t have.
“We have a peace of mind with everything that’s going on. With all of the constant testing, with all of that stuff, obviously it wasn’t perfect, but I think we had a lot more peace of mind. You go over the last couple of months and people are leaving their houses or buildings just to walk in their hallways or streets.”
New England and the NFL, obviously, have to be pleased with the team’s latest round of tests also coming back negative. The team furthermore has to feel good about another development as well: according to a different report by ESPN, Cam Newton remained asymptomatic on Monday after already showing no symptoms associated with the Coronavirus — most commonly fever, a dry cough and tiredness — throughout the weekend.
If the Patriots’ starting quarterback remains asymptomatic, he could rejoin his teammates as early as Thursday.
Before that, however, he also would have to produce two consecutive negative tests separated by 24 hours. In case Newton does suddenly develop symptoms, on the other hand, he will not be allowed to return until at least 10 days have passed since those symptoms first appeared. Furthermore, at least 72 hours would need to pass after he last showed them before a return would be green-lighted under the NFL’s protocols.
All in all, however, it is conceivable that Newton could be back in the Patriots’ lineup for the upcoming game against the Denver Broncos on Sunday.