Patriots at Chiefs: Both teams negative for COVID-19, on track meet in Monday clash on CBS

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There’s still good news coming out of the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs organizations, and everything remains a go for their NFL on CBS special scheduled for Monday evening. The two teams initially saw their Week 4 matchup paused when Cam Newton tested positive for COVID-19 — forcing the Patriots to then deploy contact tracing and also run immediate testing on all players and personnel. The Chiefs ran their own [several] rounds of tests, out of an abundance of caution, additionally fueled by consideration of the outbreak within the Tennessee Titans clubhouse.

Tests have continually come back negative for both the Patriots and Chiefs, and that was again the case on Monday morning — CBS Sports insider Jason La Canfora confirms — and New England is now cleared to fly west to face off with Patrick Mahomes and the defending Super Bowl Champs. The matchup will unfortunately not feature Newton, who will not travel with the team due to his positive test, and must pass mandatory protocol before being removed from the COVID-19 list and allowed to rejoin the team.

CBS Boston is reporting that everything is on track for tonight’s game, with the last hurdle being “PCR test results which will come later on today.”

Pats-Chiefs will kick off at 7 p.m. ET Monday on CBS (you can stream it on CBS All Access and follow on CBS Sports App), with Falcons-Packers to kick off at 8:50 p.m. ET on ESPN.

 It will be veteran quarterback Brian Hoyer getting the start in Kansas City, infinitely increasing the level of difficulty for Bill Belichick and a Patriots team that is now designed around Newton’s talents. It’s Hoyer’s second stint in New England — signed this offseason to compete with Jarrett Stidham and later (albeit not truly) Newton. 

The 34-year-old is 16-22 as a starter, and doesn’t present the dual threat of Newton, but underestimating Belichick is never a good idea. As such, the contest could figure out a way to be closer than many predict. Of course, that won’t be the case if Mahomes has his way, and he usually does.

All of that said, it’s nothing but good news for the NFL after an initial scare led by one of the more prominent names in football who happens to also be on one of the more prominent teams, but disaster has seemingly been averted — unlike with the Titans, whose continued positive tests forced a shift in the schedule of three teams — as the Patriots leave the tarmac to challenge the most lethal team in all the land. At one point, that was the Patriots themselves, but in 2020 they’ll walk in as the underdogs. It’s unfamiliar territory, but Belichick has seen it all before — as he readies to lock horns with another who has in Andy Reid.

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