Sean Payton’s coronavirus scare is over. It started with ‘racetrack’ Twitter abuse

 nypost.com  03/26/2020 14:24:15   Greg Joyce

Sean Payton said he was “cleared” Tuesday, eight days after the Saints coach took a test that eventually showed he had coronavirus.

The 56-year-old Payton has been resting at his home since then, but said he has gone without a fever for eight or nine days.

“I’m doing well. I was cleared (Tuesday),” Payton said Wednesday night on WWL radio in New Orleans. “It’s been quite a process. You spend a lot of time trying to learn as much as you can about it. We’re certainly seeing it on the news 24/7.

“So I’ve been fortunate. You stay inside like everyone’s doing, and you find ways to pass the time. We had a competition committee meeting the other day on teleconference. But I’m feeling a lot better. And unfortunately, my appetite didn’t dissipate at all during that time. You know, you watch a lot of Netflix, then you go on to Twitter, and you see everyone else is watching the same shows.”

Payton was the first known case of COVID-19 in the NFL. He woke up on March 16 with the chills and feeling achy, so he took a test that day. The results came back positive on Thursday, the same day Payton went public with it.

Now he is trying to make sure others take it seriously.

“We try asking nicely, and we try saying, ‘Hey, look, this is the deal.’ And then you still see behavior that makes you upset,” Payton said. “Just picture everyone’s got a hand grenade on ’em — how about that? So stay away from everybody.

“We’re not invincible, and every one of us certainly can catch this thing. Shoot, we’ve got politicians, athletes — you name it, they’ve caught it. Prince Charles caught it, right? So it doesn’t matter if you live in a castle or you live in an apartment.”

Payton was living his regular life right up until having to get tested for coronavirus. He attended the NFL Combine in Indianapolis that ran through March 2, saw a few Broadway shows that weekend and the next weekend went to horse races at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

“My Twitter blows up. ‘Hey, what is he doing at the races?’ Hey, if I knew I had this, I wouldn’t have been at the racetrack two weeks ago. And the racetrack was closed. I was there in a small ownership group,” Payton said. “And then [people complained], ‘He got a test on Monday without symptoms.’ I had symptoms. I wasn’t gonna use a test if I didn’t have symptoms.”

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