Following the Patriots’ loss to the Chiefs on Monday in a game where quarterbacks Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham combined for four turnovers — the most by the Patriots in a single game since 2012 — the status of Cam Newton remains a critical question.
The 31-year-old was placed on the COVID-19/reserve list on Saturday after the team experienced a positive test, and has been in quarantine since. His status remains uncertain for New England’s Week 5 home matchup against the Broncos on Sunday at 4:25 p.m.
However, as NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport pointed out, Newton appearing to be asymptomatic isn’t the same as actually being asymptomatic.
“I would just add some caution as far as calling someone asymptomatic,” Rapoport explained. “The way the virus manifests itself, he does not have symptoms today, he did not have symptoms yesterday, but really could [have symptoms] at any point.”
From NFL Now: #Patriots QB Cam Newton has not shown COVID-19 symptoms yet (as the CBS broadcast mentioned), but it’s still a longshot for him to be cleared and play vs. the #Broncos. I’ll explain 👇🏻👇🏻👇🏻 pic.twitter.com/Ei4yWT5E5N
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 6, 2020
Still, if Newton continues to show no symptoms, he might meet the conditions requisite for a return to the field as early as this week.
By the COVID-19 policy established by the NFL, Newton’s return to practicing (and playing) for the Patriots is predicated on the following conditions being met:
- Continuing to exhibit no symptoms of COVID-19
- Testing negative consecutively 24 hours apart
- Receiving clearance to return to the team by a team doctor
Otherwise, Newton will have to wait at least 10 days since first testing positive.
If the Patriots’ starter is able to satisfy the league’s procedures — and tests negative twice this week — he could potentially return to practice as soon as Thursday, and possibly play against Denver in Week 5.
“The problem is that is determined by when the virus actually leaves his system,” Rapoport added. “Does it leave his system in time enough to get him ready for the Broncos. As of right now, it seems far-fetched, but it is possible.”
Newton’s positive test reportedly occurred on Oct. 2.
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