Nov 29 (Reuters) - Denver Broncos starting quarterback Drew Lock apologized on Sunday for not following the NFL's guidelines for masks, a move that ultimately left his team scrambling to fill the position for this week's game.
Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles were all taken off the field during Saturday's practice and deemed to be a "high-risk" after close contact with fellow Broncos quarterback Jeff Driskel, who tested positive for the coronavirus on Thursday.
Lock said in a statement that the entire Broncos team were taking the COVID-19 pandemic seriously but that the quarterbacks did not follow protocols when they held a meeting together.
"In a controlled and socially distanced area, we let our masking slip for a limited amount of time. An honest mistake, but one I will own," Lock wrote in a statement.
"I sincerely apologize and I fully understand why these safety precautions are so important. Doing the right thing for a majority of the time is not good enough."
The Broncos elevated rookie receiver Kendall Hinton from the practice squad on Sunday to step in at quarterback. (Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; editing by Ken Ferris)