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The 49ers have closed their facility after a positive test for COVID-19. This comes just a day before the 49ers are scheduled to play the Green Bay Packers, who had running back Jamaal Williams test positive.
NBC Sports Bay Area’s Jennifer Lee Chan was the first to report that the team would close its facilities.
BREAKING: Team source confirms #49ers COVID testing results revealed a positive test. Their facility will be closed immediately.
— Jennifer Lee Chan (@jenniferleechan) November 4, 2020
After that report, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that it was wide receiver Kendrick Bourne who tested positive.
49ers’ WR Kendrick Bourne tested positive, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 4, 2020
NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco reported, through Bourne’s agent, that Bourne is currently asymptomatic and is self-isolating.
Kendrick Bourne’s agent, @henryorgann, tells me: "I just got off the phone with Kendrick this morning. He is extremely sad but taking this very seriously and isolating himself in the house.”
Bourne is not feeling any symptoms, his agent said. #49ers
— Matt Maiocco (@MaioccoNBCS) November 4, 2020
This puts Thursday night’s game in immediate peril, but at this point, according to multiple reports, the NFL plans to go ahead with Thursday night’s game as scheduled, though the situation remains fluid.
Contact tracing will be conducted to see who has come in close contact with Bourne and whether they need to be added to the reserve/COVID-19 list. The 49ers returned from Seattle on Sunday and did not practice Monday or Tuesday, so it may be the case that Bourne contracted the virus in that window, and had less limited contact than would normally be the case.
The 49ers released the following statement:
“The San Francisco 49ers were informed today that a player has tested positive for COVID-19 and the individual immediately went into self-quarantine. Our organization has entered the NFL’s intensive protocol and we are working with the league on contact tracing to identify high risk individuals. All team functions will be conducted virtually today.
“The health and safety of our players, staff and community are the organization’s highest priority. We will continue to work closely with the NFL and medical professionals and will follow their direction.”
After cutting Dante Pettis on Tuesday, this leaves the 49ers with four receivers on the active roster and just two who are verifiably healthy in Brandon Aiyuk and Trent Taylor. Deebo Samuel (hamstring) will not play on Thursday, while Richie James Jr. (ankle sprain) would have been limited in practice if the 49ers held it on Tuesday.
So what’s next? Even before Bourne testing positive, it seemed exceedingly likely that Kevin White would be promoted to the active roster. It would be very surprising if that doesn’t happen at this point. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the team can only make additions from its practice squad. River Cracraft was activated last week, and the only other receiver on the practice squad is Chris Finke.