METAIRI, La. — Alvin Kamara has tested positive for COVID-19, which precludes him from opening the season next weekend, according to ESPN source Adam Schefter.
After controversial test results Kamara tested positive, which according to a source was confirmed on Friday afternoon. He is on the Reserve/COVID-19 list and will miss Sunday’s regular season finale in Carolina.
According to the COWID-19 protocols of the NFL, a player who tested positive cannot return until 10 days after the sample that tested positive has been collected. Kamara can only come back next Sunday, but only if his test on Thursday was positive.
NewOrleans.football was the first to report that Kamara tested positive and missed training on Friday pending the results of a new test.
The Saints still have the chance to take the top position in the NFC, which would require a bye in the first round and a race as late as week 16 and 17. January would mean. Besides their own victory, they also need a victory for the Chicago Bears against the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks against the San Francisco 49ers.
If they don’t say goodbye, the Saints will open the play-offs next Saturday or Sunday.
The loss of Kamara is a blow, as he was perhaps the most valuable player in the Saints this year, while other stars, Drew Brees and Michael Thomas, were out of time due to injuries. Thomas (ankle) is expected to return from an injury next week, but the Saints are only 10 quarters of the entire season in the Big Three.
Kamara, who has been healthy in all 15 games this season, is also expected to be one of the top candidates for the NFL Offensive Player of the Year award. He leads the NFL with 21 touchdowns after becoming the first player in 91 years to score six in a game last week. And he’s third in the league with 1,688 yards to go in the scrimmage.
Kamara was 68 meters away from his first season of 1,000 meter races.
Deputies Latavius Murray, Ty Montgomery and Dwayne Washington could have played an important role in Kamara’s absence.
Saints (11-4) should also be nickel-free C.J. Gardner-Johnson safety nickel Sunday after he was put on the reserve list/COVID-19 earlier this week. Saints general manager Mickey Loomis was not on the team this week as a precaution due to the high risk of close contact.
The Saints also ruled out the safety of Marcus Williams (ankle) and the tight game of Josh Hill (hand) for Sunday’s game. And they still don’t have a receiver: Thomas, Trequan Smith (ankle) and Deonte Harris (neck), all in the victim’s bath.
As usual, Kamara participated in the New Orleans attack, both as a runner (932 yards) and as a receiver (83 career opportunities for 756 yards). But it was more important than ever for a Saints’ offense to have the highest average running yards per game (140.6) and the lowest average passing yards per game (237.8) during the Brees/Sean Payton era.
As a team, the Saints have more running yards (currently 2,109) than they have had since 1983. Kamara caught 67 assists in 11 matches with Brees this year, more than 25% of the assists completed by Brees. The Saints have placed a total of eight players on the reserve list/COVID-19 this season: Kamara, Gardner-Johnson, Pro Bowl left tackle Terron Armstead, receiver Emmanuel Sanders, quarterback Jameis Winston, running back Derrick Kelly II of Washington and cornerback Ken Crowley.