Chiefs-Patriots game off after Newton positive for COVID-19

New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton (1) celebrates his touchdown pass to running back Rex Burkhead (34) in the first half of an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton (1) celebrates his touchdown pass to running back Rex Burkhead (34) in the first half of an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The NFL postponed this week’s game between New England and the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs after “positive COVID-19 tests on both teams.” Patriots starting quarterback Cam Newton and Chiefs practice squad quarterback Jordan Ta’amu were both added to the NFL’s COVID-19 reserve list released on Saturday afternoon.

The NFL said Saturday that the game, originally scheduled for 4:25 p.m. EDT on Sunday, will be played Monday or Tuesday, a move that would be possible only if there is no wider spread of the disease on the rosters.

Newton has started all three games for New England. Ta’amu has not appeared in a game but would have spent time in meetings with Super Bowl MVP Pat Mahomes and the team’s other QBs.

Newton's agent did not immediately respond to a message from The Associated Press seeking comment.

It is the second game this weekend that has been affected by COVID-19. After an outbreak on the Titans, the matchup between Pittsburgh and Tennessee was postponed — originally for a day or two, and then until Oct. 25 as the positive tests accumulated.

To fit it in, the Steelers' game against Baltimore that day was pushed back to Nov. 1.

The Patriots had been planning to fly to Kansas City on Saturday afternoon. Instead, players left the facility to await further instructions. The team said in a statement that the COVID-positive player has entered self-quarantine and that players, coaches and staff who were in close contact with him were tested Saturday morning and all were negative.

With Newton now unavailable while he quarantines, Brian Hoyer is expected to start in his place. He has been Newton’s backup in each of the Patriots’ previous three games.