A staff member within the Kansas City Chiefs organization has tested positive for COVID-19, leading to a change of plans for the rest of the week as the team prepares for the Carolina Panthers.
The identity of the staff member has not been publicly reported or revealed by the team, but the Chiefs announced the news in a statement on Thursday morning:
The club was notified this morning that a staff member has tested positive for COVID-19. The individual is self-quarantining, under the team’s medical care, and contact tracing is taking place. The team is now in the NFL’s Intensive Protocol and working closely with the league and medical experts. The health and safety of our players, coaches and staff members remains our number one priority. The Chiefs will hold practice this morning and then out of precaution, the facilities will be closed this afternoon and meetings will be held virtually. We’ll continue to monitor the situation and take any appropriate action necessary to protect the team and those around us. The team will continue its preparation to play the Carolina Panthers on Sunday.
This is just the latest coronavirus scare within the Chiefs organization, which received positive tests from former practice squad quarterback Jordan Ta’amu and an unnamed strength coach earlier in the year. Fullback Anthony Sherman was placed on the team’s COVID-19/reserve list, though he never reportedly tested positive for the virus and was placed on the list due to having contact with someone who did.
It appears that the Chiefs will attempt to continue business as usual as they prepare to face the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The team moved Wednesday’s practice up to 11:30 and canceled the day’s media availability, but did practice in-person before — according to the statement — planning to close the facilities and move to virtual meetings for the rest of the day.
While seeing how the NFL has planned to continue Thursday night’s game between the Green Bay Packers and San Francisco 49ers despite a slew of positive COVID-19 tests, it seems safe to say that the Chiefs and Panthers will play on Sunday unless a significant amount of additional tests are found in the coming days.