The coronavirus continues to plague the National Football League.
The New England Patriots’ game in Kansas City against the Chiefs has been postponed to Monday or Tuesday at the earliest after it was announced on Saturday that New England quarterback Cam Newton has tested positive for COVID-19.
Chief practice squad QB Jordan Ta’amu also tested positive, the NFL reported on the league’s website. Both players were placed on the league’s reserve/COVID list.
The Tennessee Titans’ clash against the Pittsburgh Steelers already had been rescheduled for later in the season when a group of Titans tested positive for the disease, which into Saturday had led to nearly 7.4 million cases and 210,000 deaths across the U.S.
President Donald Trump is one of those cases and has been admitted to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. for care and recovery.
“The New England-Kansas City game scheduled for 4:25 p.m. ET Sunday will be rescheduled to Monday or Tuesday after positive COVID-19 tests on both teams,” the NFL said Saturday in a statement.
“In consultation with infectious disease experts, both clubs are working closely with the NFL and the NFLPA to evaluate multiple close contacts, perform additional testing and monitor developments. All decisions will be made with the health and safety of players, team and gameday personnel as our primary consideration.”
The league added that Sunday’s game between the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears has been moved from 1 p.m. ET to 4:25 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on CBS.
Newton is the highest-profile NFL player to thus far test positive. Since he replaced Tom Brady in New England, the Patriots have a pair of wins in their first three games.
“Late last night, we received notice that a Patriots player tested positive for COVID-19,” the Patriots said in a statement Saturday. “The player immediately went into self-quarantine. Several additional players, coaches and staff who have been in close contact with the player, received point of care tests this morning and all were negative for COVID-19.”
The statement went on to say that the Patriots were in close contact with the NFL about the viability of flying to Kansas City for the game, leading in the end to the game being postponed.
Earlier in the week the NFL and its players’ union had agreed to expand daily testing and strengthen the league’s health and safety protocols.