A week after a historic Christmas Day performance that resulted in six touchdowns that tied a 91-year old league record, New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara has been placed on the COVID-19 list. This designation leaves his status for the Saints regular season finale against the Carolina Panthers in question.
According to the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols, a player who tests positive is not permitted to return until ten days have passed since the positive test. Depending on when Kamara’s test was collected, he could return next Sunday, without having been at any practices or meetings all week.
Alvin Kamara, who will be only the second Saints player to lead the team in both rushing and receiving, currently leads the NFL with a franchise-record 21 total touchdowns after his Christmas Day scoring outburst, is ranked second in the league with 93 first downs and third with a career-best 1,688 total yards from scrimmage, the seventh-highest total in club history. He is the only Saint to be selected to the Pro Bowl in each of his first four seasons.
The Saints (11-4) will play the Carolina Panthers (5-10) this Sunday, Jan. 3, in the regular-season finale. New Orleans, winners of the NFC South for the fourth consecutive season, still have a shot at the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs which would mean a first round bye and not playing until January 16-17.
If they don’t get the bye, the Saints will open the playoffs either next Saturday or Sunday. If the Saints play on Saturday, Kamara wouldn’t be permitted to play. This would be a huge blow to the Saints who are without another weapon in Michael Thomas.
Thomas is set to return from injured reserve next week. If Kamara isn’t available, his presence becomes even more critical. COVID-19 keeps on kicking and now it may impact the playoffs.