Earlier on Wednesday it was reported that Tampa Bay Buccaneers Pro Bowl wide receiver Antonio Brown was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list.
We’re now getting more information on this via ESPN’s Adam Schefter. The NFL insider notes that Brown has tested positive for the virus, placing into question his availability for Sunday’s big matchup against the conference rival Los Angeles Rams.
If a vaccinated player tests positive for COVID-19, he must then return two negative tests 24 hours apart before being cleared to play. Ahead of the start of the season, vaccine advocate and Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians noted that their entire roster had been vaccinated for COVID. Obviously, Antonio Brown fits in that category.
Impact of Antonio Brown news
If Brown can’t suit up, it would be an absolutely huge loss for the defending champions. The seven-time Pro Bowler opened the season by catching five passes for 121 yards and at touchdown in a win over the Dallas Cowboys. He responded by bringing in just one pass from Tom Brady in last week’s blowout victory over the Atlanta Falcons.
Chris Godwin and Mike Evans would still remain Brady’s top targets if Antonio Brown can’t go. And while we hate to focus on fantasy football when it comes to the pandemic, it’s going to be a storyline here.
It’s in this that we wouldn’t be surprised if second-year wide receiver Tyler Johnson sees more action than he has over the first two weeks of the season. The Minnesota product has caught just one pass and has played a total of 20 snaps through two games.