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Saints Coach Sean Payton Tests Positive for Coronavirus


Saints head coach Sean Payton has tested positive for COVID-19.

Payton told ESPN's Adam Schefter that he began feeling sick on Sunday, took a test on Monday and received his results on Thursday. While he is tired, Payton said he doesn't have a cough or fever. 

"This is not just about social distancing," Payton told ESPN. "It's shutting down here for a week to two weeks. If people understand the curve, and understand the bump, we can easily work together as a country to reduce it. Take a minute to understand what the experts are saying. It's not complicated to do what they're asking of us. Just that type of small investment by every one of us will have a dramatic impact.

"I was fortunate to be in the minority, without the serious side effects that some have. I'm lucky. Younger people feel like they can handle this, but they can be a carrier to someone who can't handle it. So we all need to do our part. It's important for every one of us to do our part."

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Payton provided an update on Twitter on Thursday afternoon.

"Appreciate the well wishes. I'm feeling better and fortunate to not have any of the respiratory symptoms. 4 more days at home."

He is the first person in the NFL known to have tested positive for COVID-19.

"Our primary concern is for Sean's health and well-being. He did the right thing by seeking medical attention and we wish him a speedy recovery," NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. "It shouldn't come as a surprise as this pandemic continues that members of our NFL family be directly impacted. This news underscores the importance of everyone following the advice from medical and public health experts to protect themselves and others."

There are more than 218,700 confirmed cases of the coronavirus globally across at least 147 countries. Louisiana is one of the states with the highest number of confirmed cases in the U.S. with 280. New York has the most with 3,083 confirmed cases.