Lions special teams coach Dave Fipp has tested positive for COVID-19, which obviously puts his status for Sunday’s game in doubt.
According to multiple reports, Detroit Lions special teams coach Dave Fipp has tested positive for COVID-19. He is of course now in real jeopardy of missing Sunday’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles, the team he was special teams coordinator for from 2013-2020.
Here’s what Fipp said on Thursday, via Justin Rogers of The Detroit News.
“I feel terrible because I feel great, to be honest with you,” “I know this disease is whatever, devastating to some people. I think that’s probably the hardest thing with the whole thing is that everybody has a different experience with it. For me, I feel as good as I ever felt.”
Fipp said he’s asympomatic, and his wife and three children are healthy. Since he is vaccinated, he would only need to register a negative test on back-to-back days to be cleared to coach on Sunday. That could happen as late as Sunday morning. A rapid test on Thursday came back positive. The Lions have no other COVID-19 issues at this point.
Dave Fipp is leading the Lions’ best unit
While the Lions’ offense and defense have struggled, their special teams have been great. Punter Jack Fox is leading the league in raw punt average (50.8 yards per), and he is second in net yards per attempt (45.4). Kicker Austin Seibert is 10-for-11 on field goals, and combined with Ryan Santoso )when Seibert was out due to COVID) Lions’ placekickers are 11-for-12 on field goals and 9-for-9 on extra points this season.
The Lions emptied the special teams bag of tricks in Week 7 against the Rams, recovering an onside kick and converting two successful fake punts. Those plays helped them gain over eight minutes of extra possession time. Football Outsiders ranks the Lions as the league’s third-best overall special teams unit by their DVOA metric, behind only the Baltimore Ravens and the Washington Football Team.
Assistant special teams coach Jett Modkins will oversee the Lions’ special teams in Fipp’s absence, and naturally is expected to take over Fipp’s duties during Sunday’s game if necessary. Modkins is in his first year with the Lions, and if his last name sounds familiar that’s because he’s the son of former Lions’ running backs coach Curtis Modkins.