Bears place running back Damien Williams on reserve/COVID-19 list

Williams seems likely to miss Sunday’s game vs. Packers

Bears running back Damien Williams has been placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list, the team announced Thursday.

Players can be placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list if they test positive for the virus or if they are deemed a close contact to someone who tests positive for the virus.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Thursday night that Williams had tested positive for COVID-19.

Per the NFL’s COVID-19 regulations, if Williams is vaccinated and asymptomatic, he could return if he provides two negative tests 24 hours apart. If he’s not vaccinated and he has indeed tested positive for the virus, he must isolate for 10 days. Unvaccinated close contacts can return as soon as five days. New in 2021, vaccinated players do not have to go on the reserve/COVID-19 list if they are deemed close contacts.

It seems most likely that Williams will miss Sunday’s game against the Green Bay Packers. Williams had opted out of the entire 2020 season due to the pandemic.

With David Montgomery on injured reserve because of a knee injury, Williams had been the starting running back last week against the Las Vegas Raiders. Williams carried the ball 16 times for 64 yards and a touchdown Sunday.

Now, rookie running back Khalil Herbert is in line to earn the start against the Packers. Herbert handled 18 carries for 75 yards against the Raiders.

Sean Hammond

Sean Hammond

Sean is the Chicago Bears beat reporter for Shaw Media. He also contributes to high school football coverage at Friday Night Drive. Sean has covered various sports at the amateur, college and professional levels since 2012. He joined Shaw Media in 2016.