Bill Belichick on OMF gives update on Cam Newton, why he could play even if he continues to test positive


It's been over a week since Cam Newton has been on the COVID list and the quarterback is reportedly asymtomatic.

Based on NFL rules, since 10 days have passed, Newton could return to the team, as long as he has not shown any symptoms.

Appearing on Ordway, Merloni & Fauria Monday afternoon, Bill Belichick was asked about Newton and if he's ready to come back.

“Again, any player that would come back to the team off the COVID [list] would have to go through a medical clearance," Belichick said. "That will be part of any player’s return to the team from that situation. We’ll have to see how that goes.”

Belichick also had some good insight as to why the NFL recently changed it's rules for players returning who are not showing symptoms where if 10 days have passed they can return even if a negative test does not occur.

"I think what you’re going to find is, if a person has the COVID virus, that they’re going to continue to test positive for a significant period of time," he said. "It could be, I don’t know, 30 or 60 days. I’m not sure. I’m not a doctor here, but it depends on how much the body and how quickly it sheds the virus — but not at a contagious state. So that’s what it’s about. If you’re just looking at testing on somebody who has tested positive, they are going to be testing positive for a long time. We saw that, and many teams — I have talked to many other coaches — same thing. Guys that had it in the spring or in the summer continued to test positive into training camp, but that is based on the, whatever it is, 60 or 90 days — I forget exactly what the timetable is. But from the first positive test, there’s a certain period of time where they basically expect those tests to be positive.

“Look, this whole area is really a medical discussion. It is not a football discussion. Frankly, it’s not something that I’m qualified to talk about. It’s really more of a situation that we rely on our medical staff, our doctors, our trainers and consultation with the league medical team and that’s really what all this is about. You can’t expect a football coach to manage a hospital or make medical decisions on something like this. There’s no team in the league that’s doing it that way. This is at a different level here.”

Based on this, it seems likely if Newton continues to not show any symptoms, he will return to the team for Sunday's game against the Broncos.