UPDATE 7:55 a.m. MT Monday, Nov. 2 from Howard Balzer
In the wake of two Cardinals players testing positive for COVID-19 over the weekend, head coach Kliff Kingsbury confirmed the report Monday morning, but said, “It’s business as usual when it comes to practice today. We’re ready to roll.”
Kingsbury said contact tracing was “limited” and that there were no positive tests Sunday.
The Cardinals are coming off their bye and begin preparations Monday for next Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins. That includes a practice in the afternoon.
While Kingsbury would not reveal who the players were that tested positive, he was asked if he has any concerns that any position groups might be affected.
He said, “I’m not. I know with this situation, it’s pretty fluid day-to-day, but having all negatives on Sunday is a big step in the right direction and hopefully that continues throughout the week.”
Kingsbury is also hopeful the team won’t be affected by the situation. Noting that he’s talked about since training camp the idea that it “wasn’t a matter of if, it was a matter of when this would occur. It’s just which teams handle it best as these things pop up and you have to be able to move forward; next man up. I think guys have a good understanding on how we’ll handle this, how we’ll move forward. We can’t let it affect our mentality or how we approach next week’s game.”
Kingsbury also provided an update on the status of running back Kenyan Drake, safety Jalen Thompson and tight end Maxx Williams.
The latter two are on reserve/injured, but only Thompson has begun practicing. A decision on whether to activate him has to be made this week. If he’s not activated, Thompson would spend the remainder of the season on reserve.
Kingsbury said Williams would be at practice Monday and “run around,” while adding both players are “day-to-day and we’ll see where they’re at.”
As for Drake, the news was optimistic. Kingsbury said the ankle injury he suffered against Seattle, “looked more severe than it will end up being hopefully. He’s made good progress, but I’m not sure if it will be enough to get him back this week. But we feel from where we started and where we’re at now, we’re very fortunate.”
After navigating through the season with just one coronavirus case through seven weeks, the Arizona Cardinals had two players this weekend test positive, as reported by NFL Media's Mike Garafolo.
Garofolo reported that the facility was closed on Sunday for “deep cleaning.”
This year, because of the ongoing pandemic, players throughout the league are required to stay in their team's city throughout the bye week and continue getting daily tests.
Cardinals left tackle D.J. Humphries said during the week, "Bye week is usually when I head to L.A. to buy my winter clothes and look snazzy in the cold weather. We have to take COVID tests every day so I'll be here. I'll do some online shopping."
Because the Cardinals have not been around each other at the facility since Wednesday, it is hoped that whoever tested positive hasn't passed it to other players. The team is scheduled to return to work on Monday in preparation for its Week 9 matchup with the Miami Dolphins.
The players who tested positive have not been identified, but they will be when, as expected, they are placed on reserve/COVID-19 Monday.
Previously, second-year wide receiver KeeSean Johnson was the only Cardinals player who tested positive for the virus, which happened just before the start of the regular season. He missed two games, spending two weeks on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
This past week, the NFL announced the results of testing since Aug. 1. Through Oct. 24, the league had administered more than 500,000 tests to players and other personnel. From those tests, there were 55 players and 82 other club personnel that had confirmed positive tests.