TAMPA–The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have brought in an infectious disease specialist after a third player was diagnosed with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection (MRSA). The Buccaneers declined to identify the third player who was diagnosed with MRSA infection on Thursday.
“Over the past two months the Buccaneers organization has been working with the world-renowned DICON and other infectious disease specialists to treat and educate its players, sanitize its training facility and install new health and safety protocol,” the team said in a news release Friday. The latest diagnosis comes one day after the team said guard Carl Nicks suffered a recurrence of staph infection on his left foot. Nicks missed the first two games of the season, while kicker Lawrence Tynes is out for the season because of the potent bacteria. Infectious disease specialist Doctor Deverick Anderson said he doesn’t believe Nicks and Tynes contracted the infection from each other.
Anderson spoke to the Buccaneers before the start of practice on Friday. Tampa Bay is set to face the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. Doctors are trying to determine how the latest player contracted the infection. NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith said Friday that teams need to take precautions and they would pass along any information they have to the Eagles’ players prior to Sunday’s contest. “We have also been in regular contact with the player representatives from Tampa Bay. We will reach out to the Philadelphia Eagles player representatives today and provide them with our best medical guidance and regular updates from the outside experts,” Smith said. “This underscores the need for a league-wide, comprehensive and standardized infectious disease protocol.”