ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WKBW) — Buffalo Bills GM Brandon Beane addressed the media Tuesday afternoon, announcing that four players were identified as close contacts of a trainer who tested positive for COVID-19.
Those four players - WR Cole Beasley, WR Gabriel Davis, DT Star Lotulelei and DT Vernon Butler - have been sent home from the team's training facility. Per NFL COVID-19 protocols they must be out for five days from their last contact with the trainer who tested positive. Each player has tested negative to this point, the trainer that tested positive was fully vaccinated.
Beasley has been outspoken regarding the COVID-19 vaccine and restrictions surrounding those players who aren't vaccinated.
After the team’s first Training Camp practice, Beasley spoke to the media and read a prepared statement.
LB AJ Klein and LB Matt Milano were also sent home Tuesday out of precaution but will be able to return to practice Wednesday.
"This is part of the world we're in, fortunately it's preseason, hopefully no other positives will show up if they do we'll deal with them and we'll be ready to play come Saturday against Green Bay," said Beane.
The GM said the team has been dealing with COVID-19 protocols for so long that they always expect the unexpected and deal with the cards they are dealt.
"These are the rules that currently have been agreed upon by the NFLPA and the league office, so we just deal with them and know we all understand them, that's why I said I'm glad it's the preseason, hopefully we wont have a lot of this in the regular season but I'm sure like last year we did, I'm sure it'll happen as we get to the regular season" said Beane.
According to Beane, the team's vaccination rate among the players is around 80%.
You can watch Beane's full press conference below.
Below you can find the NFL's COVID-19 protocols for close contacts and find the full protocols here.
Any player, Tier 1, Tier 2 or Tier 3 Individual who is “Fully Vaccinated” and who has had Close Contact with a symptomatic individual and remains asymptomatic shall be tested for COVID-19 as soon as practicable, but shall not be required to isolate. Such a “fully vaccinated” “Close Contact” should receive a Mesa Test daily for three (3) days after the exposure. For purposes of these Protocols “Fully Vaccinated” means that 14 days have passed since the individual received his or her last dose of the applicable vaccine (a single dose of Johnson & Johnson, or the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna), OR the individual has previously tested positive for COVID-19 by a documented valid rt-PCR test and 14 days have passed since the individual received one dose of any COVID vaccine (Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer or Moderna). For example, if an individual received his single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or his second Pfizer or Moderna dose on May 1, that individual is “fully vaccinated” as of May 15; or if an individual previously tested positive for COVID by a documented valid rt-PCR test and received one dose of any COVID vaccine (Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, or Moderna) on May 1, that individual would be considered “fully vaccinated” on May 15.
Any player, Tier 1, Tier 2 or Tier 3 Individual who is not fully vaccinated and has had Close Contact (but is not a “High Risk” Close Contact) with a symptomatic individual and remains asymptomatic shall immediately be isolated away from others, and receive a PCR virus test (or such other test required by the parties) as soon as practicable. Such individual must continue to isolate him or herself until the results of the PCR virus test are obtained and are negative. Thereafter, if this individual remains asymptomatic, he or she will be permitted to continue to attend the Club facility and participate in activities, subject to the following:
i. Daily testing post-exposure on Days 1-8 and thereafter in accordance with the regular testing schedule set forth in the Screening and Testing Protocol;
ii. Daily health questionnaires for COVID-19 symptoms, which shall include the questions in the attached COVID-19 Screening Form; and
iii. Daily temperature checks.
iv. A record of all testing and screening results shall be maintained by the Club medical staff. For players, testing records shall be entered into each player’s EMR.