Larry Fitzgerald returns to the field after testing positive for COVID-19

Cardinals Seahawks Football
Posted at 2:26 PM, Dec 10, 2020

With their playoff chances up in the air, the slumping Arizona Cardinals got a much-needed boost on Thursday. Larry Fitzgerald returned to the team and the practice field for the first time in two weeks.

“He might be a little bit faster because he’s had a couple of weeks off,” said safety Budda Baker.

Fitzgerald, who tested positive for COVID-19 the morning of Thanksgiving, said he felt fine that day and the next. But on Saturday, and for the two days after, he started feeling not like his normal self.

“You feel symptoms and you ask and nobody really can tell you it's going to be better or how long it’s going to last. I mean, there's no real answer,” said Fitzgerald. “So your mind kind of wanders and you're sitting at home and you're watching TV and you see the cases and you see the deaths across the nation and like all these things, it is running through your mind, and obviously you worry. Fortunately, I was able to get through it. I feel much better. Still can't really taste or smell anything, but that's much better than a lot of people are dealing with. So, all in all, I'm very thankful to be back to work.”

Fitzgerald said he used his time at home to be productive on certain things he’s been procrastinating on. That included estate planning and revising his will, but never thinking about his football future beyond this year.

“I didn't really look at it like that,” Fitz said. “It was more so the immediate future, like staying alive and things of that nature. Football, and how long I play football, didn’t really cross my mind. I'm just happy to be back in terms of playing.”

The time away allowed Fitzgerald to recover from some nagging injuries, but now it’s a crunch to get back into game shape.

“I feel the best I've ever felt,” the 37-year-old Fitzgerald said. “I ran a couple of times and did a lot of Peloton workouts, but there's no substitute for going out there and running routes against other elite athletes and the level of competition and the sense of urgency that's going to be required to play in practice. I feel good, I dropped probably like nine pounds, I don't have much of an appetite, but I feel good in terms of my body.”

Whether or not Fitzgerald will be ready to contribute to the Cardinals on Sunday in New York, he said, is up to the coaches. But for someone who had only missed six games over a 17-year career prior to being absent from these past two, not being able available to help his team wasn’t a feeling he wants to get used to.

“It's a pretty helpless feeling to sit there on your couch and not be able to do anything,” Fitzgerald said. “You learn you learn very quickly in this league, you're either part of the problem or you’re part of the solution. It's hard not to feel like you're part of the problem when you're not there to help, so I hope that I can bring some added energy and do something to help our team be able to get back in the winner’s circle.”