BOSTON (CBS) — When Tom Brady ran some informal workouts with his new Buccaneers teammate, the quarterback took quite a bit of heat from national media members and some fans. The criticism centered around the fact that close contact in a state like Florida in the midst of a pandemic was potentially risky for everyone involved.
On Tuesday, those criticisms were proven to be legitimate, as one of the participants in some Brady-led workout sessions announced that he had COVID-19.
Buccaneers tight end Cameron Brate posted on Instagram on Tuesday that he has recovered from the virus and that he will be donating plasma to help fight the spread of the disease.
“Thankful to have fully recovered from COVID-19,” Brate wrote in his caption. “Donating plasma is the next step and something many can do!”
Brate, who turned 29 earlier this month, figure to be an important weapon for Brady in the Tampa Bay offense this year. As such, Brate was a participant in the workouts led by Brady in Tampa, thus putting him in close contact with Brady and other Buccaneers teammates.
“Pretty ordinary, I think, to be having throwing sessions in the offseason, even given these circumstances,” Brate said of the workouts. “Guys kind of all around the league are able to work out and throw.”
“We were able to get a lot of work in this offseason — obviously led by Tom,” Brate also said. “It has honestly been great. And while we aren’t getting the live reps we would get in during OTAs, we are still able to get the full-speed routes on air with Tom. And that has been huge for us.”
No other Buccaneers have reported positive COVID-19 tests since then, but with MLB currently in the midst of an outbreak involving the Miami Marlins, Brate’s announcement provides yet another reminder that the NFL faces steep challenges when it comes to pulling off a 2020 season without interruption.