- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
The NFL mandates everyone who has some player contact to have received the COVID-19 vaccine. It does not mandate that players receive it, although it makes things difficult for those players who choose not to do it.
The Arizona Cardinals are one of the reported teams with a relatively low vaccination rate among players. They only recently passed the 50% vaccination rate.
Star receiver Deandre Hopkins is one of them, he revealed on social media, and he is unhappy about an announcement made to players regarding potential missed games.
He suggests on his Twitter that he might retire from the NFL, rather than get vaccinated.
He later deleted the tweet, but this is a screenshot of it.
The league and the NFLPA reportedly came to an agreement that if a game is canceled because of a COVID outbreak among unvaccinated players, the team affected would forfeit the game, would take a loss in the playoff standings and — here is the major point — players from both teams will not receive their game check. They will not be paid that week.
The league will not add an extra week after the season to make up games.
Hopkin’s now public opinion is shared in some ways by many players. They do not want to be vaccinated and don’t want to be pressured into it. Hopkins doesn’t want to be in a position to be the reason why more than 100 players go without a game check.
If Hopkins were to take the next step and walk away from the league, the Cardinals would be hurt as well. They are counting on him to be their top receiver. His walking away would be walking away from his $4.75 million in guaranteed salary and could put the team in a position to ask for some signing bonus money back that he received when he agreed to his contract extension.
As training camps open and unvaccinated players must isolate themselves in their hotels and work under 2020 protocols while vaccinated players are not restricted, many players are sure to acquiesce and get the vaccine.
Will Hopkins? It is something to pay attention to as the season approaches and progresses.