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Cleveland Browns enter enhanced COVID-19 protocols after positive tests

Cleveland Browns center Nick Harris became the team's sixth player to be placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list in the last week.

CLEVELAND — Two days after Cleveland Browns running backs Nick Chubb and Demetric Felton tested positive for COVID-19, the team placed backup center Nick Harris on the reserve/COVID-19 list, bringing its current total to six. 

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In addition to Chubb, Felton and Harris, the Browns had previously placed reserve running back John Kelly and practice squad receiver Lawrence Cager and defensive back Bryan Mills on the COVID-19 list, which is reserved for players who have tested positive for COVID-19 or unvaccinated players who have been deemed close contacts.

Speaking to reporters via Zoom on Wednesday, Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski revealed that the team has entered enhanced COVID-19 protocols due to its recent positive tests. Laying claim to a 5-4 record, the Browns are set to face the New England Patriots in Foxborough on Sunday.

While it's unlikely any of the Browns players who are currently on the COVID-19 list will be available to play vs. the Patriots on Sunday, the league's protocols do allow vaccinated players who test positive to return after submitting two negative COVID-19 tests 24 hours apart. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, both Chubb and Felton are vaccinated.

Should Chubb be unable to play this Sunday, Stefanski confirmed that D'Ernest Johnson would start at running back for Cleveland, as Kareem Hunt continues to recover from a calf injury. In his lone start of the season, Johnson rushed for 146 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries in the Browns' Week 7 win over the Denver Broncos.

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