CLEVELAND — With the roster already dwindling from COVID-19 cases, the Cleveland Browns took another hit on Thursday evening with backup quarterback Case Keenum testing positive for COVID-19, according to a league source.
Keenum was slated to be the Browns' starting quarterback with Baker Mayfield testing positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.
The backup quarterback attended Thursday's practice session, getting reps with starting offensive players including Donovan Peoples-Jones, Harrison Bryant and David Njoku, who just came off the COVID-19 list Thursday morning.
Keenum was not the only member of the Browns to test positive on Thursday.
According to sources, Grant Delpit, A.J. Green, Jacob Phillips, and Ronnie Harrison Jr. tested positive.
With Keenum on the COVID-19 list, the Browns are now slated to start third string quarterback Nick Mullens on Saturday against the Las Vegas Raiders, if Keenum and Mayfield are unable to be cleared from the list.
The Browns do not have any other quarterback on the roster currently.
While the COVID-19 situation continues to develop in Berea, the NFL and NFLPA introduced updated COVID-19 protocols and testing guidelines that could allow some players to come off the list earlier than would have been possible with the previous protocols.
Still, some Browns players have sounded off the NFL's decision making in regards to COVID-19 testing, including Mayfield and defensive end Myles Garrett.
Garrett said Thursday that NFL should have been testing every day to prevent the spread of the virus among players throughout the week.
"Today, it was it was strange in the way they went about testing or I guess the lack of testing. I know today they were saying that we were not going to test, and we were just going to go into the building, even though we might have a couple more guys pop up as positive. It almost seemed like we were just ignoring it instead of addressing the issue. We should go ahead and test and then allow in the building but not before you get results, and that is how it should be," Garrett said. "The lack of testing that we have done all year I kind of feel like has led to this point. Only testing one time a week and guys doing their own thing on Monday and Tuesday with their time off, it was kind of a recipe for disaster.”
Mayfield also sounded off Thursday evening, calling out the league for not postponing the Saturday game against the Raiders. The NFL said on Wednesday that "there’s been no discussion of a change to the game’s status."
Actually caring about player safety would mean delaying the game with this continuing at the rate it is….— Baker Mayfield (@bakermayfield) December 16, 2021
But to say you won’t test vaccinated players if they don’t have symptoms, then to pull this randomly. Doesn’t make any sense to me.
Tell me if this makes sense…. No tests this morning… then let our team gather for practice… then show up after practice to test them. Something seems off here.— Baker Mayfield (@bakermayfield) December 16, 2021
Thursday evening, News 5 reached out to an NFL spokesperson to see if there had been any new consideration to postpone the game with more COVID-19 cases reported. The response received was "No change."
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
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