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Saints coach Sean Payton says he tested positive for the coronavirus

New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers
Sean Payton coaches the New Orleans Saints against the Carolina Panthers on Dec. 29 in Charlotte, N.C.
(Grant Halverson / Getty Images)

New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton said Thursday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

His is the first known positive test within the NFL.

Payton told ESPN that he has no fever or cough but didn’t feel well Sunday, so he was tested the following day.

Payton, who led the Saints to a Super Bowl victory following the 2009 season, said he’s feeling fatigued but also upbeat.

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“I was fortunate to be in the minority, without the serious side effects that some have,” said Payton, 56. “I’m lucky. Younger people feel like they can handle this, but they can be a carrier to someone who can’t handle it. So we all need to do our part. It’s important for every one of us to do our part.”

Later in the day, he tweeted a photo of himself smiling with the caption, “Appreciate the well wishes. I’m feeling better and fortunate to not have any of the respiratory symptoms. 4 more days at home.”


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