The Steelers announced today that an unnamed player had tested positive for COVID-19, and shortly thereafter his identity became clear, as the team placed tight end Vance McDonald on COVID-19 reserve.
McDonald played 20 offensive snaps and four special teams snaps on Sunday against the Cowboys.
Questions will surely be asked about why McDonald played in the game, as he missed Friday’s practice with what the team termed an illness. Sometimes people with COVID-19 begin experiencing symptoms before they test positive, and if McDonald’s symptoms were consistent with COVID-19, it would have been safer to leave him home than to bring him on the team flight to Dallas and have him play against the Cowboys.
The same thing happened with the Ravens last week, as Marlon Humphrey missed practice with an illness, then played on Sunday against the Steelers, then tested positive afterward. It’s even possible that Humphrey, who was on the field at the same time as McDonald last week, spread the virus to McDonald.
America’s COVID-19 situation is getting worse, and the same can be said in the NFL.