The same day the Jacksonville Jaguars activated second-year cornerback Luq Barcoo off the Reserve/COVID-19 list, the franchise announced the same move would be made with second-year quarterback Jake Luton.
Luton was added to the list along with Barcoo and cornerback CJ Henderson last week, but the former sixth-round pick has still been eligible to be on the practice field at the start of training camp. He has not been able to take any reps, but that should now change with his change of status.
Luton, a sixth-round (No. 189 overall) pick in last year's draft, started three games for the Jaguars as a rookie. The Oregon State product completed 54.5% of his passes for 624 yards, two touchdowns and six interceptions. He also scored a rushing touchdown.
Luton will now likely compete with CJ Beathard for the Jaguars' No. 3 quarterback role, though the Jaguars' staff admitted in the offseason that thus far the odd man out in terms of reps has been Luton, who was getting fewer reps in OTAs and minicamp than the team's other three quarterbacks.
"But I know one thing, if you look at the film, or next time you’re out there practicing, you’ll see him standing right behind the quarterback getting a mental rep and we believe that’s almost as important—it’s not quite as good—but it’s almost as important. And he has not missed one of those," Jaguars passing game coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said in June.
"So, again, four quarterbacks are an awesome luxury. We’re thrilled to have four—not only good players that we have, but great young men. The room is awesome. I would say they’re all pretty balanced, each day has been a little bit different, and they’re all maximizing their opportunities.”
With Luton and Barcoo now activated from the COVID-19 list, the only Jaguars still on the list are Henderson and cornerback Chris Claybrooks.
The Reserve/COVID-19 list is a reserve category created by the NFL for a player who either tests positive for COVID-19 or who has been quarantined after having been in close contact with an infected person or persons.
The NFL outlined the protocols for COVID-19 positive tests among employees in a memo to teams last week.
According to the memo per NFL.com, if a vaccinated person tests positive and is asymptomatic, they will be isolated and contact tracing will occur. The positive individual will be permitted to return after two negative tests which are at least 24-hours apart and will then be tested every two weeks or as directed. Those who are vaccinated will not be subject to quarantine as a result of close contact with an infected person, the memo stated.
"If an unvaccinated person tests positive, the protocols from 2020 will remain in effect," the memo continued.
"The person will be isolated for a period of 10 days and will then be permitted to return to duty if asymptomatic. Unvaccinated individuals will continue to be subject to a five-day quarantine period if they have close contact with an infected individual."