FOXBOROUGH, Mass. The New England Patriots have placed starting guard Shaq Mason, reserve defensive end Derek Rivers and ran back Sony Michel on the reserve / COVID-19 list, a source tells ESPN’s Field Yates.
Those placed on the reserve / COVID-19 list have either tested positive for COVID-19 or are a close contact to someone who tested positive.
On Friday, the Patriots canceled the practice after a positive COVID-19 test. Later that day, the club placed center James Ferentz on the reserve / COVID-19 list.
The Patriots host the Denver Broncos Sunday (CBS, 1 p.m. ET), and Ferentz, Mason, and Rivers are not playing in the game. Michel would not have played anyway as he is on injured reserve.
Start of defensive tackle Byron Cowart is also on the reserve / COVID-1
The NFL’s 2020 rules called for teams to fill gaps like this, starting with an increased training group of 16 players, in addition to two exceptions when moving players between the training group and the active list as part of a “standard height”. Teams also have the option to lift players as specific COVID-19 replacements for players landing on the reserve / COVID-19 list.
In this way, the Patriots lifted offensive lineman Caleb Benenoch from their training team on Saturday as part of a “standard height”.
In addition, defensive end Rashod Berry, receiver Isaiah Zuber and defensive tackle Nick Thurman have been raised as specific COVID-19 replacements for Sunday’s game.