Minnesota Vikings QB Kirk Cousins tests positive for COVID-19, will miss preseason opener

EAGAN, Minn. -- Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has tested positive for COVID-19, coach Kevin O'Connell said Friday. Cousins will be required to isolate for at least five days, meaning he will not travel with the team for Sunday's preseason opener against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Barring complications, Cousins would be eligible to rejoin the team Tuesday for the final week of training camp. O'Connell said Cousins' symptoms are minimal.

The Vikings sent Cousins home from training camp Thursday after he fell ill but did not immediately confirm the diagnosis.

"I like the way he handled it," O'Connell said, "reporting the symptoms and just going through our in-house process here. I'm proud of how he did that, looking out for his teammates and making sure that we'll get him back ready to roll as soon as possible."

Cousins missed one game last season after testing positive for COVID-19. He also quarantined for five days of training camp last summer because he was an unvaccinated close contact of backup quarterback Kellen Mond, who had tested positive.

The NFL paused its remaining COVID-19 protocols in March. But all league employees -- including players -- are required to follow CDC guidelines following a positive test. Teams can also impose additional protocols if they choose.

O'Connell had not revealed his preseason playing-time plans for Cousins, and it's possible Cousins would not have played against the Raiders regardless. Backups Mond and Sean Mannion, who have been competing to be the No. 2 quarterback in camp, will handle the load Sunday.