Patterson, 61, tested positive for COVID-19 on December 24. He missed the Vikings’ 30-23 loss to the Los Angeles Rams on Dec. 26 before returning to the squad last Friday and being back on the sidelines for the 37s last Sunday. -10 loss at Green Bay.
“It’s great to be back,” Patterson said Wednesday. “It was hard not to be there. It was the first football game that I missed, as a player, as a coach, so it was really difficult. It was hard for me to watch this game and feel like I couldn’t help my guys. ”
When Patterson tested positive, Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said he was “struggling”. Patterson, who is fully vaccinated and received his booster, did not deny that it was difficult.
“I feel a lot better now,” Patterson said. “It wasn’t much fun. It touched me pretty well. I just think people need to understand how serious this deal is. It’s not about you personally, it’s about the people around you, your children, your parents, your grandparents. You don’t want them to go through it.
“Often in life we have to make sacrifices for the people we love, our community and our environment. So, to be protected from this deal, I think it’s very important. … It’s scary for me to think about what would have happened to me if I hadn’t been vaccinated and hadn’t had a booster.
While not feeling well, Patterson said he participates in virtual meetings when he is away. He said the Vikings players “reached out” to watch him and knew he “was struggling” because “they could hear the cough” during the meetings.
Breakdown of the COVID list
Since the beginning of November, the Vikings have put 34 players on a COVID-19 list. That’s 23 from the 53-player roster, nine from the training squad and two from the injured reserve.
Of the 23 on the 53-player roster, 15 have so far missed at least one game. Two of those 15, safety Harrison Smith and center Garrett Bradbury, missed two games.
“This is the world we live in,” said Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins, who was banned from the COVID list on Wednesday after missing a game. “I guess most teams have had to deal with it in one way or another, even over the past couple of years, not just this year. I am proud of the way our organization has fought through it “
Prior to November, only two Vikings players, both from the 53-player roster, were on a COVID roster.
Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr missed the first four games of the season with a knee injury and also missed a Week 10 game with that injury. Zimmer is happy with the way he bounced back.
“(The injury) was killing him early in the year,” Zimmer said. “We never expected he would be away for this long. But he spent every waking moment in the training room, trying to prepare.