KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Chiefs and Las Vegas Raiders are scheduled to take the field this Sunday night.
While plenty of starters are slated to take the field, the biggest factor of the night could be COVID-19.
On Wednesday, NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport was first to tweet that “nearly the entire” starting defense for the Raiders has been placed on the COVID-19/reserve list due to high-risk, close contacts.
This is wild: Nearly the entire #Raiders starting defense is going on the COVID-19 list because of high-risk close contacts, but all are eligible to play in the game if they continue to test negatively, sources tell me and @TomPelissero.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 18, 2020
Rapoport said at least eight starters and others who play key roles won’t be able to practice in the lead-up to Sunday’s game.
According to the Raiders COVID-19 list obtained by 41 Action News' Nick Jacobs, the players include DB Johnathan Abram, DT Maliek Collins, DT Johnathan Hankins, DB Isaiah Johnson, DE Arden Key and DT Kendal Vickers. Defensive end David Irvin is also on the team's COVID-19/reserve list. He is a member of the Raiders' Practice Squad.
The report says that while some players are likely to be cleared by Saturday, others won’t be cleared for action until game day.
The news comes as a handful of Chiefs remain on the COVID-19/reserve list. Offensive linemen Eric Fisher, Mitchell Schwartz and Martinas Rankin, and wide receiver Mecole Hardman remained on the list as of Wednesday afternoon.