NFL teams could forfeit games if unvaccinated player starts a COVID-19 breakout

·2 min read

With training camps underway, the NFL is adding additional incentives for players to get the COVID-19 vaccination. In a memo sent out Thursday by NFL commissioner Rodger Goodell, it was announced that team forfeits and the loss of game checks could be the penalty for outbreaks that are caused by unvaccinated players.

However, the policy doesn’t completely rule out rescheduling but applies to those who are unable to reschedule within the league’s 18-week regular season.

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This memo comes as the league has encouraged vaccinations for players, though there is an agreement with the NFL Players Association that states it’s not a requirement. As of the time of the memo being released on Thursday, Goodell stated that more than 75% of the league’s players had at least received one vaccination shot. He also stated that more than half of the league had vaccination rates above 80%.

Back around mid-June, a report surfaced that stated the Jags were one of four teams lagging in terms of vaccination rate. However, they picked up some momentum towards the desired rate as ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported that the Jags and Carolina Panthers were two teams who saw a spike in vaccinations on June 25.

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The Jags’ rookies reported to camp on Tuesday, and the veterans will be reporting on July 27. After that point, it won’t take long to find out which players aren’t vaccinated as they take the field for their first practice on June 28.