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7 Ravens teammates identified as ‘high-risk’ contacts after Humphrey’s COVID-19 diagnosis

November 3rd, 2020 by WCBC Radio

The Baltimore Ravens have seven "high-risk" close contacts identified after cornerback Marlon Humphrey tested positive for COVID-19, ESPN reports.  Citing a source, the seven players are linebacker Matthew Judon, linebacker Patrick Queen, safety DeShon Elliott, linebacker L.J. Fort, linebacker Malik Harrison, cornerback Terrell Bonds and linebacker Tyus Bowser. This doesn't necessarily mean they have tested positive or will miss Sunday's game. Humphrey, on the other hand, must quarantine for 10 days following his positive test. They are considered "high-risk" because they spent so much time around Humphrey while unmasked.

Humphrey played every defensive snap in Sunday's loss against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

In response to Humphrey's test and another positive test on the Green Bay Packers, the NFL is expanding the sideline area to give teams more space to physically distance. They are also mandating the use of masks before and after games and at halftime.

The league also is strongly encouraging players to wear masks whenever they come off the field and teams in intensive protocol are prohibited from holding in-person coaching and personnel meetings.

“What we are trying to convey is masks can prevent you from becoming a high-risk contact, which is our goal, so it’s in everybody’s best interest to wear a mask for their protection and again to reduce exposure,” NFL chief medical officer Dr. Allen Sills said on a conference call. “We believe that the mask use whether it’s in the locker room, on the sideline, it just reduces your chance of becoming a high-risk contact should someone turn positive.”

Sills said if the league learns someone is positive during a game that person would be removed from the game or sideline.

The Denver Broncos said Tuesday general manager John Elway and team president Joe Ellis tested positive.

“We’re trying to double down on high-risk, close contacts during game day so we’re asking our clubs to have their players wear masks on the sideline, in the locker room and we’re mandating it for the post-game interactions that might occur between teams because we think these are all vulnerable areas where we see contact occurring that could be high-risk contact,” Sills said.

“So our memo to the club illustrates that point. It also talks about the critical importance of avoiding in-person meetings for coaching staffs when they’re in this intensive protocol. We have seen some transmission around coaching staffs and we think that’s been related to the amount of time that they can spend together in meetings as they’re doing their game planning and their preparation work. So we really want to double down on that point as well.”

The sideline area will stretch from one 20-yard line to the other.

“Our focus and efforts really continue to be limiting those exposures, particularly for the high-risk, close contacts,” said Dawn Aponte, the NFL’s chief football administrative officer. “And as we said before, those high-risk close contacts are really things that are within the club’s control and individual’s control.”

Sills said of the 130-plus positive cases reported among players and staff, one person required hospitalization.