Kansas City Chiefs get Kelce, Butker and more back from COVID list

Sports

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI – DECEMBER 12: Travis Kelce #87 of the Kansas City Chiefs celebrates with fans as he walks off the field after defeating the Las Vegas Raiders 48-9 at Arrowhead Stadium on December 12, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — There’s good news for the Kansas City Chiefs after their COVID-19 outbreak last week.

Coach Andy Reid said Wednesday that everyone on the active roster passed COVID protocols.

That includes tight end Travis Kelce, who was moved to the active roster before last Sunday’s game in hopes of playing, but he didn’t clear the COVID list in time.

Reid also confirmed that the remaining four players on the team’s reserve/COVID list — cornerback Rashad Fenton, safety Armani Watts, kicker Harrison Butker and punter Tommy Townsend — were all at practice Wednesday.

The news comes one day after the NFL reduced isolation time for players who test positive for COVID-19 and are asymptomatic, including unvaccinated players, from 10 days to five.

The league’s change came after the CDC changed its guidelines for those who are asymptomatic, recommending a five-day isolation period and masking over the second five days.

Fully vaccinated individuals may continue to “test out” of isolation as well. It’s not clear at this time if the Chiefs players who returned Wednesday came back after testing or due to the NFL’s isolation changes.

Running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire did not practice Wednesday after leaving in the second half of last week’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers with an injury. ESPN reports he’s considered week-to-week with a bruised shoulder.

Safety Tyrann Mathieu also left Sunday’s game with a quad injury, but on Wednesday, Reid said Mathieu “feels great.”

On Monday, linebacker Nick Bolton and offensive linemen Lucas Niang and Kyle Long were also cleared from the COVID list. Like Kelce, Bolton and Niang were put on the active roster before Sunday’s game but didn’t clear protocols in time.

At one point the Chiefs had 13 players on the active roster and three on the practice squad test positive. They managed to get wide receiver Tyreek Hill and several others cleared in time for the game, and Kansas City tromped Pittsburgh 36-10 to wrap up another AFC West title.

Up next, Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs take on Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals this Sunday.

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