A coronavirus rule change has been approved by the NFL after Dez Bryant was forced to withdraw from the Baltimore Ravens’ game with the Dallas Cowboys.
Baltimore beat the Cowboys 34-17 in Week 13.
They did so despite being one player short on their matchday roster after wide receiver Bryant was ruled out close to kick-off, much to his frustration ahead of facing his former team.
He received an inconclusive COVID-19 test result but subsequently had a rapid-result positive.
It meant the Ravens had to remove him from the roster even though their inactive players had already been announced.
Going forward, NFL.com has reported a team can elevate or activate a new player up to 30 minutes before kick-off, even if they have previously been declared inactive.
Prior to the change, the rule was players could only be activated up to 90 minutes before the start of a game.
After the Cowboys win, a Monday Night Football thriller between Baltimore and AFC North rivals the Cleveland Browns saw the Ravens triumph 47-42, improving to 8-5 for the season.
Bryant was activated from the team’s reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday.