The NFL suffered quite a scare this past weekend, as a total of 77 positive tests for COVID-19 came back to 11 teams. After further review, it was concluded that these were false positive tests, and all of the original tests were rerun on Sunday night with each sample coming back negative for the coronavirus. While the fact that the league did not experience a massive outbreak is good news, there was a period of uncertainty where no one seemed to know what was going on. Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen was one of the players who received a false positive test, and he was pretty upset about it.

“I got a call at six in the morning saying I tested positive and honestly, it’s nothing you want to hear and I’m sitting there like, ‘I feel fine, there’s nothing wrong,'” Allen said, via the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. “I come in, try to get in the building and I have to go through protocol. I went through the test that was right here that gives you results in 15 minutes and that came back negative. I’m super frustrated that I wasn’t (at practice).”

Jon R. Cohen, M.D., the Executive Chairman of BioReference Laboratories, the testing partner of the NFL,¬†released a statement¬†explaining that these false-positives were due to an isolated contamination in the New Jersey lab. If there was anything good to come out of this whole situation, Allen says, it’s that the league ran across this problem before the regular season.¬†

“I’m happy that it happened now instead of come season time,” said Allen. “If this were to happen on Saturday or Sunday, who knows if I’d be playing. It sucks that I was kind of the guinea pig and whatnot, and part of that process, but I’m glad it wasn’t then, I’m glad it was now and we’re able to kind of move past it.”

It will be interesting to see if the NFL changes its protocols after what happened this weekend. Apart from the safety rules themselves, testing is the most important facet when it comes to attempting to conduct a season in the safest way possible.

“I think it was a good opportunity for our team to kind of go through a day of adversity, to give us an opportunity to have this (happen now) in case it was a game day,” Allen said. “I’m sure a lot of these questions that maybe hadn’t been asked or hadn’t really been worked out, hopefully those get fast-tracked and we have a clear, concise plan when the season comes around.”


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