The New England Patriots will be without quarterback Cam Newton for the bulk of this week due to what the team says was a "misunderstanding" regarding the COVID-19 protocols. A statement released by the club on Monday explains that Newton traveled to a medical appointment -- that was team-approved -- which required him to leave the New England area. Over that stretch, he received daily COVID-19 tests, which all came back negative. However, because those tests were conducted away from NFL facilities, he is now forced to wait five days before returning back to the facility.
"On Saturday, Cam Newton traveled to a Club-approved medical appointment that required him to leave the New England area," the Patriots statement reads. "He received daily Covid tests, which were all negative. Due to a misunderstanding about tests conducted away from NFL facilities, and as required by the NFL-NFLPA protocols, Cam will be subject to the five-day entry cadence process before returning to the facility. Cam will continue participating virtually in team activities and return to the club facility on Thursday, August 26."
Newton tested positive for COVID-19 back in October of last season, which forced him to miss the Patriots' Week 4 matchup with the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Patriots have practices Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday this week over the stretch that Newton will be sidelined. Wednesday's session is the first joint practice New England will have with the New York Giants before their preseason finale on Sunday. With him on the shelf to begin this week, first-round rookie Mac Jones will likely see extended work with the first-team offense, which could prove to be a valuable time for his development to ultimately take Newton's spot as QB1 in Foxborough.
Who will be the Patriots' starting quarterback this season? Can Mac Jones unseat Cam Newton? And what does it mean for the rest of the Patriots' players? Download the CBS Sports app to find out! Plus, get insight from our resident Patriots insider, Tyler Sullivan. If you already have the CBS Sports app, make sure to pick the Patriots as your favorite team for up-to-the-minute news.