GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Los Angeles Rams will be down several starters in a division matchup against the Arizona Cardinals on Monday Night Football after two more players were added to the reserve/COVID-19 list.
The Rams announced that cornerback Jalen Ramsey and tight end Tyler Higbee were added to the list Monday, joining right tackle Rob Havenstein, reserve cornerback Dont’e Deayon and running back Darrell Henderson, who were added over the weekend.
Both Ramsey and Higbee tested positive for COVID-19. Higbee had a positive test followed by two negative tests, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. If his overnight PCR test comes back negative then he will come off the COVID list Tuesday, the source said.
The NFL had 37 total positive COVID tests Monday, league sources told Schefter.
Rams coach Sean McVay has said that to his knowledge, all but one player on the roster has received the COVID-19 vaccine, and that the lone player who did not has since gained antibodies.
Vaccinated players must test negative twice in a 24-hour span to be eligible for action. None of the listed players are expected to be available against the Cardinals, who defeated the Rams 37-20 in Week 4.
The Rams (8-4) trail first-place Cardinals (10-2) by two games in the NFC West standings.
Depth will be an issue at cornerback, tight end and running back, while the offensive line could see two reserves start.
Darious Williams and David Long remain the only cornerbacks on the roster with experience. Rookie Robert Rochell, who had recently been working his way into the lineup, was placed on injured reserve last Saturday because of a chest injury.
Higbee’s absence will be felt at tight end after the Rams entered the season already thin at the position. Backup Johnny Mundt was placed on injured reserve in October, leaving second-year pro Brycen Hopkins and former undrafted free agent Kendall Blanton as the only backups.
And at running back, Sony Michel is expected to start in place of Henderson for a second consecutive game. Michel started and rushed for a season-high 121 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries last Sunday in a rout of the Jacksonville Jaguars as Henderson nursed a thigh injury.
Tackle Joe Noteboom, who has played a key role as a backup at left tackle previously, is expected to start in place of Havenstein. Center Brian Allen was listed as doubtful going into the game. If he is unable to play, third-year pro Coleman Shelton, also an undrafted free agent, will start.
The Rams activated defensive backs Grant Haley and Kareem Orr, tight end Jared Pinkney, running back Javian Hawkins, guard Jeremiah Kolone and wide receiver Brandon Powell from their practice squad for Monday night’s game.