Thanks to a new rule, NFL teams can now get help when a player tests positive for COVID-19 on the day of a game.
A memo on the matter was sent to all 32 teams Wednesday, via Tom Pelissero of NFL Media, describing the new rule. Basically, teams can activate someone to replace a player who is out because of a positive COVID-19 test, or has been close to someone with COVID-19, after the inactives are announced.
This stems from the Baltimore Ravens’ Week 13 game, when Dez Bryant was pulled from the lineup prior to kickoff after a positive test. The Ravens were not allowed to replace him. Now teams can, just in time for the playoffs.
The new rule allows teams to make a move up to 30 minutes before kickoff. Only inactive players and practice squad members are eligible to be COVID replacements.