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Doug Pederson speaks for first time since positive coronavirus test

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Hear from the Philadelphia Eagles head coach.

Doug Pederson held a Zoom press conference with Eagles reporters on Monday morning following the Sunday night news that he tested positive for COVID-19. The head coach started things off with a statement:

“First of all, I appreciate everyone’s well wishes. Have a lot of text messages, phone calls the last 24 hours or so.

And listen, I know this virus affects people differently. And I’m very respectful and mindful of that. And I also want everybody to know that I feel great. Energy level is high. Really no symptoms whatsoever. And I’m very fortunate because I do know and understand that this virus attacks people a little bit differently. I’ve been in great communication, constant communication, with not only our medical team and doctors but also my staff and the team itself.

I think one of the things that I’ve learned this offseason is that I can still run the team virtually. And that’s what I have been able to do today. Even yesterday holding staff meetings, things of that nature, team meetings.

And also want to reiterate the fact that I’m very comfortable and confident that the protocols we have in place at NovaCare are for the best interest of the football team and all those that enter that building. And it still is a very safe environment. And one of the things we all need to learn and what I need to learn taking away from this is that obviously we need to protect ourselves when we’re in the community, away from the building. Continue to wash our hands, wear our masks, do the social distancing that the medical teams and doctors have prescribed.

Obviously we’re taking this very seriously around our building and our every day lives and we need to continue to do so. So, we understand that things like this are going to happen. I’ve been able to talk to my staff about contingencies not only with players but also with staff members. I mentioned, I believe, last week when we got together something about this.

I’m not going to speculate on a timetable for me, I treat it just like players. I’m not going to speculate on that. And when I’m back, I’m back.”

It’s certainly encouraging to hear that Pederson is asymptomatic and feeling “great.” He can return to the NovaCare Complex as soon as Friday if he receives two negative tests before then.

Still, one can’t help but wonder if/when other players and coaches will join Pederson in testing positive. The team seems to have implemented good precautions at their own facility but they don’t have the same control when people are away from headquarters.

Speaking of, Pederson didn’t want to get into how exactly he believes he contracted the coronavirus. ESPN reported that it was believed Pederson got it away from the team facility.

Other takeaways from Pederson’s presser include:

  • Pederson said he’s still able to contribute to meetings virtually. He confirmed that assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley assumes his rol in the building while he’s gone.
  • Pederson said he’s self-quarantining, meaning he’s staying away from his family right now. He emphasized he’s wearing a mask at home in addition to being diligent about washing his hands and keeping a distance.
  • Pederson says the Eagles haven’t decided anything when it comes to potentially quarantining a quarterback. He did say it is “something to consider.” (Remember when Adam Schefter cited COVID as part of the reason why the Eagles drafted Jalen Hurts?)
  • While some might be understandably discouraged about the viability of the 2020 season, Pederson said he’s “extremely optimistic” and “confident” the Eagles are going to be able to play games.