The Tennessee Titans have been through this before.
While having dealt with a COVID-19 outbreak previously isn’t something to celebrate, it does provide the Titans with a blueprint to follow.
Head coach Mike Vrabel revealed on Sunday that he tested positive for COVID following Saturday’s 34-3 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In the days since, Tennessee has added defensive lineman Anthony Rush, running back Jeremy McNichols and linebacker Nick Dzubnar to the reserve/COVID-19 list.
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill stated on Tuesday that the team has taken its COVID precautions more seriously since Vrabel’s positive test, including an increase of mask wearing around the training facility.
“I don’t know officially or anything like that,” Tannehill said. “But we upped our protocols a little bit just trying to keep everybody safe and healthy.”
Vrabel himself remains in quarantine until he gets two negative COVID tests in a 48-hour period in order to return to the Titans’ facility. He’s been staying present virtually in team meetings, he watches practice film after his personal workouts and sets the schedule with his assistant coaches after that.
The 46-year-old coach disclosed in a virtual meeting with reporters on Tuesday that he received a monoclonal antibody infusion — a form of therapy that uses specific antibodies to interfere with the virus’ ability to attach to cells, lessening the severity of COVID symptoms and reducing the need for hospitalization.
“I feel fine, I feel great, and I am ready to get back to work,” Vrabel said. “Hopefully I can get two negative tests here in 48 hours, if not, then we will continue on this path that we are on right now.”
The Titans close out the preseason on Saturday against the Chicago Bears at Nissan Stadium. It’s not known when, or if Vrabel will be available for that game.
“All I can say is I am hopeful,” he noted. “But until I have two negative tests, I will stay here and continue to miss the hell out of the football team.”
Follow Michael Gallagher on Twitter @MGsports_