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Browns close down HQ after positive COVID-19 test

Chris Hubbard placed on reserve/COVID-19 list, no other players expected to miss Sunday’s game against Houston.

NFL: DEC 29 Browns at Bengals Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

UPDATED with Chris Hubbard being placed on reserve/COVID-19 list.

The Cleveland Browns closed team headquarters in Berea on Friday after a player tested positive for COVID-19.

The team did not disclose who tested positive, but on Friday afternoon placed right guard Chris Hubbard on the reserve/COVID-19 list, meaning that Hubbard will miss Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans.

No other players were found to have been in close contact with Hubbard, so for now it appears that the Browns will have everyone else available for the game. The Browns also re-opened the training facility for practice.

The statement was also posted on clevelandbrowns.com and reads:

“Earlier this morning, the Cleveland Browns were informed that a player’s test results have come back positive for COVID-19. The individual has immediately self-isolated and the Browns facility is closed this morning while contact tracing is being conducted. The team will continue to hold meetings remotely (part of the NFL-NFLPA intensive protocol) and will consult with the league and medical experts on the appropriate next steps as the health and safety of our players, coaches, staff and the entire community remains our highest priority.”

Despite the positive test, the game against the Texans is still on as scheduled, league spokesman Brian McCarthy told cleveland.com.

According to the league’s protocols, the player who tested positive would only be eligible to play on Sunday if he is asymptomatic, has two negative tests that are 24 hours apart by Sunday, and is cleared to play by the Browns medical staff, who will be consulting with the league’s chief medical officer, according to Mary Kay Cabot at cleveland.com. If the player is symptomatic, he will be out for a minimum of 10 days.

If any players or coaches are found to have been in close contact with the players, they will be out for Sunday’s game because they are required to quarantine for five days before being eligible to return to in-person activities with the team, according to Cabot.

This is the first time the Browns have dealt with the situation since the start of the regular season. A non-coaching staff member did test positive last weekend during the team’s bye week, however, which landed quarterback Baker Mayfield on the reserve/COVID-19 list for a few days. Mayfield was able to return to practice on Wednesday.