Saints running back Alvin Kamara didn’t play in Week 17 because he tested positive for COVID-19 on the Thursday before the game, but he was able to return for Sunday’s playoff win over the Bears.
Kamara was not able to rejoin the team until Saturday, so he had no practice time leading up to the game. He ran 23 times for 99 yards and a touchdown and caught two passes for 17 yards, which suggests the lack of on-field work wasn’t a problem.
In fact, Kamara said it helped “having that down time” and that he felt like he “got a first-round bye” that his teammates were not able to enjoy. Thanks to streaming video, Kamara was also able to stay connected to practice without physically being there.
“It didn’t really affect me too much,” Kamara said, via Luke Johnson of NOLA.com. “I try to stay attuned with what’s going on week in and week out, so I can kind of pick up things on the fly.”
Kamara will get back on the practice field Wednesday, but the Wild Card round showed that it’s not a prerequisite for a strong performance on Sunday.