Finally some bit of good news for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Although it is bittersweet, rookie cornerback Johnthan Banks has been cleared to play in Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles after Dr. Deverick Anderson of DICON said that he did not pose any risks of transmitting the MRSA infection to other players. Anderson also met with the Eagles Saturday regarding the situation.
The NFL and the NFLPA released a joint statement regarding the Buccaneers' MRSA situation:
"The NFL and NFLPA have worked together in response to the MRSA matter in Tampa Bay," the statement read. "The jointly retained specialist has met with the team supervised the inspection of the facilities, conducted medical examinations and agrees with the team medical staff that Mr. Banks does not pose a risk of transmission to other players. The specialist also met with team officials from the Eagles. All players have been advised of the process and we will continue to work together to jointly monitor the situation."
Banks was evaluated by Anderson Saturday afternoon in which tests confirmed the strain of MRSA and is the third Buccaneer to have contracted the infection.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport states that Anderson found no evidence that the infections originated from One Buccaneer Place and that the separate strains came from outside, according to his sources.
After confirmation of a third case, Dr. Anderson concluded that the team facility is a safe environment.
"I can say that I believe that it is a safe environment for players and staff, and I think there are a few reasons why that's the case," Anderson said Friday. "I got to come and review the facilities about a month ago and got to see how practice was performed. I think, based on my observations, I didn't think there was anything very high risk, I think football in-and-of itself was a known risk factor for MRSA and MRSA infection in general. So, that the fact that a case, or even two, and now three cases occurred does not necessarily in-and-of itself mean that this is any higher risk than any other football location in the country."