Commissioner Roger Goodell has informed teams of a new policy that encourages players to get the shot but is just short of requiring it. Rather, the memo includes incentives that include rescheduled games fall into the team’s responsibility and mentioning that players on both teams will be paid. Even worse is that the team responsible for the canceled game will also have to cover financial losses and have to deal with whatever punishment the Commissioner’s office decides.
“If a game is canceled/postponed because a club cannot play due to a Covid spike among or resulting from its non-vaccinated players/staff, then the burden of the cancellation or delay will fall on the club experiencing the Covid infection,” the memo states. “We will seek to minimize the burden on the opposing club or clubs. If a club cannot play due to a Covid spike in vaccinated individuals, we will attempt to minimize the competitive and economic burden on both participating teams.”
Currently, more than 78% of NFL players have had at least one shot, while 14 teams have at least 85% of players vaccinated. However, all 32 teams have at least a 50% vaccination rate.
As NFL players get informed, one wide receiver, in particular, is already upset by the new rules.
“Never thought I would say this, But being in a position to hurt my team because I don’t want to partake in the vaccine is making me question my future in the @Nfl,” said Arizona Cardinal DeAndre Hopkins in a since-deleted tweet.
But shortly after, he did tweet, “Freedom?”
Here’s how the rest of NFL Twitter is reacting to the new rules and Hopkins’ decision: