Days after he tested positive for COVID-19, Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel says he’s feeling better and is ready to get back to work.
Unfortunately, Vrabel can’t do that just yet, as he must get two negative test results in a 48-hour span before he can return. As of right now, that hasn’t happened.
Vrabel said he has “almost non-existent symptoms” and was even able to get in a workout while at home. The Titans head coach told reporters on Sunday that he was experiencing a sore throat and ear ache at first.
“I feel fine, I feel great,” Vrabel said, per Jim Wyatt of Titans Online. “I’m ready to get back to work.”
Despite his being absent from practice, Vrabel is still involved. He has been meeting with coaches, team officials, and trainers to talk about injuries, and has been watching tape of practice.
Vrabel hopes to be back in time for the preseason Week 3 contest against the Chicago Bears in Nashville on Saturday. If not, he isn’t sure what the team will do yet, but noted there is still time to work that out.
“We have time until Saturday,” Vrabel said. “I am confident that our players will be ready and prepared for the football game. All I can say is I’m hopeful, but until I have two negative tests I’ll stay here and continue to miss the hell out of the football team.”
While Vrabel was out on Monday, special teams coach Craig Aukerman ran the show, but Aukerman appeared to be absent on Tuesday, per John Glennon of Broadway Sports. It isn’t clear if Aukerman’s absence is COVID related.
On top of all that, Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Ryan Succop, who is fully vaccinated, tested positive for the virus, head coach Bruce Arians said on Tuesday. That’s concerning because Succop had dinner with Titans players last week.
“All contacts [with Vrabel] were outside. We had one that went to dinner with some guys that did test positive today,” Arians said, per ESPN’s Jenna Laine. “He went to dinner with some Titan friends. That was Ryan Succop. So he’s out for this game.”
It isn’t clear when the dinner took place, or who attended it. Vrabel wasn’t sure of that answer either, and he declined to comment when asked if any other players or coaches had tested positive.
Tennessee has three players on the Reserve/COVID-19 list at the moment, including defensive lineman Anthony Rush, linebacker Nick Dzubnar, and running back Jeremy McNichols.
The team has now made it mandatory for all players, coaches and staff to wear a mask in the facility.
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