Buffalo Bills wide receiver Cole Beasley was sent home from the team’s training facility Tuesday after being deemed a close contact of a trainer who tested positive for COVID-19 despite being vaccinated, reports say.
Beasley, 32, tested negative Tuesday morning but was removed from the Bills facility per the league’s COVID-19 safety protocols, the New York Daily News reported first. He will have to undergo a five-day reentry process despite the negative result– a rule that does not apply to vaccinated players.
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According to ESPN, Beasley was working with a trainer Monday who tested positive for coronavirus. He was fully vaccinated. Wide receiver Gabe Davis and defensive tackle Star Lotulelei also tested negative but were deemed close contacts and sent home.
Beasley seemingly confirmed reports after retweeting Tweets from ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
The veteran wideout has been an outspoken critic about the league’s COVID protocols, mainly with the testing procedures for vaccinated and unvaccinated players and staff. Under the updated policy, unvaccinated members will have to undergo daily testing while vaccinated ones will be tested every two weeks.
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“I’m not spreading anything. I get tested every day. Do you? I’ve already had a teammate who was vaccinated be sent home for covid yesterday,” he said in a tweet last month. “Luckily he caught it on Monday. Cause if it was Tuesday he would’ve given it to everyone for a whole week before being tested again.”
The NFL essentially lifted all restrictions for vaccinated players, but a memo from the NFLPA earlier this month said it would recommend daily testing for all players and staff due to the rise in cases and the delta variant.
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“We have consistently stated that football will go the way of our communities, and multiple cities and states are experiencing record surges in infections and hospitalizations due to the Delta variant,” the memo read. “Based on our experience from last year, the number of positive tests in the first week of training camp is cause for concern.”
The memo said that since training camps began on July 25, 65 players and staff have tested positive, and 32 of them were vaccinated.