Report: Kendrick Bourne’s COVID-19 test may have been a false positive

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The 49ers quite possibly will be missing several key players tonight for no good reason.

Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area reports that the original positive test result that resulted in four players landing on the COVID-19 reserve list may have been a false positive.

‘It is looking as if . . . . Kendrick Bourne’s test from yesterday was a false positive, according to source close to him,” Maiocco said on Twitter. “He and three others who live with him have all tested negative.”

If true, it doesn’t matter. The test result was a confirmed positive (even if it’s ultimately a false positive). That knocks out Bourne and, based on contact tracing, receiver Brandon Aiyuk, receiver Deebo Samuel, and tackle Trent Williams for Thursday night’s game against the Packers. (Samuel would have separately missed the game, due to a hamstring injury.)

It’s unfortunate and unfair, but it’s one of the various potential inequities of pro football in a pandemic. As the league balances the urgency of playing all games with the importance of protecting player health and safety, some teams will end up, to use a technical term, getting screwed.

In the end, getting screwed and playing the games is better than not getting screwed — and not playing the games.

UPDATE 1:19 p.m. ET: The NFL disputes this report, insisting that Bourne generated a confirmed positive.

5 responses to “Report: Kendrick Bourne’s COVID-19 test may have been a false positive

  1. Of course you stoke the fire. No one is getting screwed. Everyone has the same chance of it happening so theres no imbalance or unfair advantage. Calling it getting screwed is the problem, everyone wants to give shortsighted knee-jerk reactions. It’s no different than a bad call on the field by the refs, everyone has the same chance of it happening(contraty to what the tinfoil hat wearing crowds want to say here of their team never gets called but so and so always does, I’m guessing same people who get upset losing a video game and make excuses)

  2. For the video people like Florio have to keep saying the Packers were caught off guard or flatfooted. I am a Packer fan if your team is a bully that can hit us in the mouth they fold. It isn’t some random thing that happens cause they had a bad week. Good running teams bully them.

  3. If it’s a PCR test (especially one obtained using a nasopharyngeal swab) it’s very very likely it’s a true positive. The PCR test is testing for a specific sequence of RNA unique to SARS-Covid-2 and you’d basically have to have picked up SARS-Covid-2 viral RNA near your nares, yet not have been infected (and not have had it enter one of your respiratory epithelial cells), and have the swab pick it up for it to be a false positive. The likelihood of having a false positive PCR test is extremely low. On the other hand, it’s more likely to have a false negative.

  4. Can’t wait to laugh when this happens in the playoffs. WE GOT SUPER CEREAL COMPETITION HERE, BOYS!

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