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Peter King reported that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell might use a panel of 3-5 people with no affiliation to a team for advice surrounding all COVID questions.
Last week, Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford had a “false positive” COVID test that resulted in Stafford being removed from the COVID-19 list. Due to the false positive, the NFL and NFLPA agreed on Friday to a rules change in the testing that will include a “point-of-care” test. This change is expected to enhance the current testing process. These tests are “instant” and can be done without sending the sample to a lab.
Pro Football Talk reported that the new tests have a much higher degree of accuracy than the league believed it had. Initially, the league thought these POC tests were accurate between 80-85% of the time. A week later—based on representations from the vendor—the POC tests are reportedly 97% accurate. The NFL is hoping that these point of care tests will supplant the current testing that requires each test to be sent away. For that to happen, I’d imagine the accuracy rate needs to be 99%, at worst. If we reach that point, there’d be a lot more optimism in the season lasting and possibly finishing. There’s an argument to be made about everyone in each team’s facility possibly catching the virus outside of work. That will remain a concern until we flatten the curve of coronavirus cases in the US.