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Cardinals, Jets Set To Play Sunday After COVID Situation 

After potential positive test, re-test for Jets player was negative

Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and the Cardinals departed to the East Coast on Friday for their Week 5 matchup against the New York Jets.
WR DeAndre Hopkins and the Cardinals departed to the East Coast on Friday for their Week 5 matchup against the New York Jets.

After a player for the New York Jets -- Sunday's opponent for the Cardinals -- had a presumptive positive test for COVID-19 Friday morning, the Cardinals waited to see if it impacted their game for Sunday.

As the Cardinals were in the air flying to New York Friday afternoon -- and after coach Kliff Kingsbury said during a noon press conference, "as of now, it's business as usual." -- the Jets released a statement saying all their players had tested negative and Sunday's game would proceed as scheduled.

But it had left the Cardinals with some uncertainty earlier in the day.

"Like anything else in 2020, we will prepare as normal and adjust as necessary," GM Steve Keim said on 98.7, Arizona's Sports Station, about an hour after the orginal news broke. "A lot of moving parts, but we will be ready for whatever is ahead of us."

The news was jarring to Kingsbury, the coach acknowledged, after the way the Cardinals played in Carolina and the desire to get back on the field again to wash away the memories of that performance.

"There is frustration with how we played last week," Kingsbury said. "So when you hear that initially, you're like, 'Oh no, we really want to get back out there.' And then you settle in and realize you can only control what you can control."

Kingsbury said the organization continues to push being diligent of following COVID protocols in team meetings, and noted that the news is often flashing across the screens with the NFL Network playing on TVs at the Dignity Health Training Center. Head athletic trainer Tom Reed also addresses the team once a week.

Kingsbury seemed to want to push that message to his players Friday at practice, with the first song blaring out of the speakers as players stretched Future's "Too Comfortable," with the line repeating, "don't get too comfortable."

"I have a tattoo on my shoulder that says, 'Each day is not promised,' " safety Budda Baker said. "Right now, we're practicing, we're working with each other and that's all we can think about. We can't about anything of the future. Right now, it's Friday, we got done with practice, we'll have our meetings and then we'll head off to New York like it's any other week."

Tackle D.J. Humphries was laid back about any potential changes to the team's trip or game day, saying "whatever happens, happens" and acknowledging the Cardinals' two-game losing streak has taken precedence in his mind.

"I think that's why my attitude is what it is, because everyone is so focused of getting back on track," Humphries said. "We also found out about this (this morning), so it's kind of hard to think about. It (was) a Friday practice so we were focused on the task at hand.

"We'll be prepared to go whenever it is."

The Jets re-tested, and got the negative results. The NFL has moved games if needed to buy time in such situations; this week, the Titans -- who have been dealing with a full coronavirus outbreak for a couple of weeks -- are scheduled to play the Bills on Tuesday night.

Images from practice at the Dignity Health Training Center, presented by Hyundai.

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