Dr. Allen Sills, the NFL’s chief medical officer, in consultation with medical experts, determines when a club must follow the Post Exposure COVID-19 procedures.
“Everything dealing with the disease and COVID-19 and what we’ve got to deal with, I will follow to the highest and protect the team at all costs, even if it means shutting down a practice like yesterday,” Morris said.
The players found out about the shutdown when they reported Thursday.
“We had to get tested for COVID-19 in the cars and things like that,” defensive end Dante Fowler said. “They told us that we wouldn’t be able to come into the facility because of people who tested positive. We had virtual meetings and everybody was on top of that. We were able to overcome that and still be able to get a good day of mental work in.”
Defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich doesn’t believe the Falcons will have a problem following the additional protocols.
“We’ve been so ultra-cautious through this entire process that not much has really changed,” Ulbrich said. "I know that the league has mandated a few more rules, but they are rules that we were kind of already abiding by.
“We are a part of this organization and league that is taking this thing very seriously.”
The Falcons have had nine players placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list and one coach test positive. Rookie defensive lineman Marlon Davidson was placed on the list Monday.
“We’ve had them in the intensive protocol this week specifically knowing that other cases could arise,” Sills said. “Since we did have that index case on Sunday into Monday. We’ve done contact tracing to identify any high-risk individuals that we would need to remove.”
“Even at the beginning of the season when this was even a thought, I would sit with coach (Dan) Quinn a bunch and formulate plans that you would have to go to in case a person went down,” Morris said. “For every position, we had to go through that process of who was going to do what for who and how.”
“In consultation with the team, they decided to make all of their activities virtual,” Sills said. “We’ll obviously continue to monitor that situation very carefully and stay in contact with them as well as in Carolina.”
Morris already had plans in place to split duties if one of the coaches contracted the disease and was unavailable.
“Even at the beginning of the season when this was even a thought, I would sit with Coach (Dan) Quinn a bunch and formulate plans that you would have to go to in case a person went down,” Morris said. “For every position, we had to go through that process of who was going to do what for who and how.”
Falcons' next four games
Falcons at Vikings at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18al trial
Lions at Falcons at 1 p.m. Sunday Oct. 25
Falcons at Panthers at 8:20 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29
Broncos at Falcons at 1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 8
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