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COVID Surge Forces NFL to Postpone Week 15 Games

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COVID Surge Forces NFL to Postpone Week 15 Games

As a result of a surge in COVID-19 cases across the United States, multiple NFL Week 15 games have been postponed. The NFL announced Friday that the Raiders game against the Browns has been moved to Monday, and the Seahawks’ matchup against the Rams has been moved from Sunday to Tuesday.

Raiders-Browns will air exclusively at 5 p.m. ET on NFL Network. Washington-Eagles and Seahawks-Rams will air at 7 p.m. ET on FOX.

According to the NFL, the schedule changes were made based on medical advice and after discussions with the NFL players association as we are seeing a new, highly transmissible form of the virus this week that has resulted in an increase in cases across the league.

Using medical experts as a guide, the NFL will continue to make decisions to ensure the health and safety of the community.”

In a memo sent to all 32 teams on Friday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell explained the changes to the schedule.

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NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero obtained a memo from Goodell in which Goodell stated that the emergence of the Omicron variant is the sort of change that simply demands a flexible response.

In Cleveland, more than 20 players have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since the team last took the field Sunday.

Following a positive test on Thursday, backup quarterback Case Keenum joined starter Baker Mayfield on the COVID-19 list. Mullens will start for the Browns if neither Mayfield nor Keenum is able to return in time for a game that will now take place on Monday.

Coach Kevin Stefanski and running backs coach Ryan Cordell are also currently unavailable because of the protocol.

Additionally, the Los Angeles Rams are dealing with a significant COVID-19 outbreak, placing nine players on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Thursday, bringing their total to 21.

Four more players were added to the practice squad reserve/COVID-19 list on Friday. Von Miller was the most notable addition Thursday. L.A. then added four more players to their COVID list Saturday.

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The 49ers’ cornerback Jalen Ramsey missed Monday night’s game against the Cardinals due to a positive drug test. Odell Beckham joined him on Tuesday.

Following a positive test, Washington quarterback Taylor Heinicke was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list. His backup Kyle Allen is already on the reserve/COVID-19 list, which prompted Washington to sign Garrett Gilbert off the Patriots’ practice squad.

Jordan Ta’amu has also joined the practice squad, where he joins Kyle Shurmur, who will start if Heinicke and Allen cannot play on Tuesday. There are currently more than 20 players in COVID-19 protocol on the Washington Football Team.

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On Thursday, the NFL announced new protocols that allow fully vaccinated players to return from quarantine a day after testing positive if they produce two negative tests within 24 hours and are symptom-free.

In addition, the updated protocols forbid in-person interaction between coaches, players and others within team facilities unless they are held outdoors or in the team’s practice bubble with physical distancing.

Additionally, all players and staff are required to wear masks indoors, as well as in the weight room, regardless of vaccination status. Outside the facility, restrictions on public appearances, charity events, and gathering in groups greater than three have been increased.

According to NFL Network’s Judy Battista, about 100 players recently tested positive for COVID-19 over a three-day span. Thirty-two players were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Friday alone.

NFL Players are being placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list due to the spike in positive tests.

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