Thursday's NFL: Rams shut down complex after Brian Allen's positive COVID-19 test
Los Angeles — The Los Angeles Rams shut down their training complex for roughly two weeks and several people went into quarantine after center Brian Allen, a former Michigan State standout, tested positive for COVID-19 last month.
Reggie Scott, the Rams’ senior director of sports medicine and performance, said Thursday that nobody else in the Rams’ organization has fallen ill during the coronavirus pandemic. Allen also is feeling much better after battling the viral illness.
“As of today, we have no other positive tests, which is amazing,” Scott said. “The good thing is I have not gotten any other phone calls or anything about anybody getting sick or feeling symptoms, which is great. Everybody is doing their job and doing their due diligence and social distancing.”
The Rams’ training complex re-opened this week for certain players and personnel following appropriate safety guidelines. Allen had been using the Rams’ complex last month for his rehabilitation on his surgically repaired left knee, which kept the starting center sidelined for the final seven games of last season.
Allen was the only Rams player who has been tested for the virus, according to Scott, who said the Rams are only testing employees who show symptoms. Allen told Fox Sports that his sense of smell and taste were affected, but he was not hospitalized.
“His symptoms were not heavy at all,” Scott said. “He’s doing great, which is great news to hear, because you hear so many different things with this.”
Allen played at Michigan State from 2014-17, appearing in 51 games with 38 starts. He was a fourth-round pick and became the Rams’ starting center last season. He is expected to resume the role this season after recovering from his knee injury.
Allen is the first NFL player to acknowledge testing positive for COVID-19. New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton also said he recovered from the illness, and the Los Angeles Chargers said an unnamed member of their organization had tested positive.
The Rams didn’t reveal the positive test until Allen spoke to Fox Sports about his illness.
Beckham rumors 'false'
Browns chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta dismissed a report the team is trying to trade star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., whose future — whether in New York or Cleveland or anywhere — always seems in question.
DePodesta said on a conference call from his home in California that the team is not working on a deal involving Beckham, who was injured during his first season with the Browns after arriving in a blockbuster trade last March.
On Wednesday, a report said the Browns were in talks with the Minnesota Vikings about the 27-year-old Beckham.
“Completely false,” DePodesta said.
DePodesta added any thought about the team looking to trade Beckham is unfounded.
“It’s frustrating a little bit,” he said. ”I think it’s pretty clear what we’re trying to build at this point. We got an awful lot in free agency. We’re excited about what we have a chance to do in the draft. We’re really building around a corps of players that we think we have a chance to have a championship-caliber core and the idea we would take away from that core at this moment just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense and really not something we are exploring at all.”
DePodesta feels Beckham wants to see things through with the Browns, who were a disappointing 6-10 last season.
The three-time Pro Bowler posted a video on his Instagram account of him opening a box containing three new No. 13 jerseys after the team unveiled a more traditional look on Wednesday.
“I have no reason to believe that he doesn’t want to be here,” DePodesta said. “Odell’s been very good this offseason. He’s been engaged I know with Kevin. I know he’s excited about the possibilities of what this offensive system could bring for him and we’re excited to have him.”