Doyel: What did you think would happen, Carson Wentz? You're too special to get the vaccine?

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The Indianapolis Colts could release Carson Wentz right now, and I’d help pack his bags. Where does he live? Because he’ll need a ride to the airport.

The NFL put Wentz and two more teammates on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday, adding to the Dumpster fire that this 2021 Colts preseason has become, because Wentz doesn’t care about his new teammates, his new city, none of it. According to NFL Network, Wentz and the other two Colts put into quarantine Monday, receiver Zach Pascal and center Ryan Kelly, didn’t test positive for the coronavirus themselves. No, they’ve been quarantined as “close contacts.”

Only unvaccinated players can go onto the reserve/COVID-19 list as a close contact with someone who has tested positive.

Who could that be? Possibly Colts left tackle Eric Fisher, who tested positive for COVID-19 last week and has been on the reserve list ever since. That same NFL Network report said Wentz, Kelly and Pascal were close contacts with an unnamed Colts staffer, not a player – not Fisher – and I trust their reporting.

But who infected that unnamed staffer?

Well, we know Eric Fisher had COVID-19. You have to hand it to Fisher: He’s the gift that keeps on giving. Because of him, All-Pro left guard Quenton Nelson spent five days on the reserve/COVID-19 list, five days of rehabilitation he can’t get back as he tries to return from foot surgery in time for the season opener.

Now Fisher, possibly, helped send the Colts’ starting quarterback, center and receiver to the reserve/COVID-19 list as well.

I’m so glad you came here, Eric Fisher. Need help packing? Where do you live? I can be there in 15 minutes.

Well, maybe a half-hour. Because Wentz has to go first.

This didn't have to happen

This was so avoidable. That’s why I’m so angry at Carson Wentz and Eric Fisher, and Ryan Kelly and Zach Pascal for that matter. And Quenton Nelson, too.

Based on every single piece of evidence available to us – from NFL protocols about who can (and cannot) be placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list as a close contact to whether they’ve worn masks at times to whether they’ve avoided answering the vaccine question directly – every player in the above paragraph appears to be unvaccinated. The same goes for Darius Leonard, based on the mask he wears and the comments he and his wife have made on social media against the vaccine.

Believe that? Beloved All-Pro linebacker Darius Leonard is actively campaigning against the vaccines, which were working – which were saving lives – until the Delta variant mutated, thanks in part to the unvaccinated among us, and now runs amok.

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Carson Wentz (second from right) with other quarterbacks at Grand Park in Westfield on Monday, August 10, 2021, on the third week of workouts of this summer's Colts training camp.
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Carson Wentz (second from right) with other quarterbacks at Grand Park in Westfield on Monday, August 10, 2021, on the third week of workouts of this summer's Colts training camp.

More Doyel on Colts, Covid:

This was so avoidable, but these guys, for whatever reason, have decided to ignore every credible bit of scientific evidence to listen to crackpots or despots or whatever voice is trying to tell them: Pssst, you know better than every credible epidemiologist in the country.

Hell, do these guys even know what an epidemiologist is? It’s someone who studies outbreaks of diseases, Darius. It’s someone who went to school for a decade or more, just to learn how to best combat viruses like COVID-19, Carson.

It’s someone who knows a hell of a lot more than you, Quenton and Eric and Ryan and Zach, the best ways to beat a virus that has, to date, kicked our collective ass. People are dying, and that includes – yes – anti-vaxxers whose last words, as they die a hellish death of respiratory failure, is to urge their family to get the vaccine. What is happening around the country feels impossible, like watching millions of people walk into busy traffic because they think they know more than traffic signs and police officers and, I don’t know, every shred of evidence that walking into traffic is a bad idea.

We have many of the most important players on the Colts walking into traffic, and despite being urged regularly by coach Frank Reich, general manager Chris Ballard and owner Jim Irsay, these guys refuse to get vaccinated.

How do you tell an adult not to play in traffic?

How do you tell an adult that two plus two equals four?

What’s wrong with you, Carson Wentz?

Previous Colts quarterbacks dedicated themselves to hospitals

A reminder of what we used to have here in Indianapolis: The Colts’ last two franchise quarterbacks, the last two quarterbacks who devoted most if not all of their careers to the Colts, were Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck.

In 2007, St. Vincent Children’s Hospital was renamed: Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. Our city’s other crown jewel of a pediatric hospital, Riley Hospital for Children, was Andrew Luck’s No. 1 community commitment. He’d visit patients. He’d comfort parents. Nobody asked him to do it. He just did it, because he cared.

Carson Wentz won’t take the coronavirus vaccine.

This will keep happening, you know. As long as these guys aren’t vaccinated, they’re in danger of being put back onto the reserve/COVID-19 list as a close contact of whoever tests positive next. Because, with this irresponsible roster and that relentless Delta variant, someone will test positive again. Just a matter of time. Next time, maybe it’ll be one of these guys themselves.

This is a choice, yes, but don’t you dare tell me it’s personal. An unvaccinated person who tests positive can pass the virus on to any of us, even those of us who have been vaccinated, because breakthrough infections are possible. To the deep thinkers out there who love to sneer the following – “If the vaccine works, why are there breakthrough cases?” – let me say what, apparently, must be said:

Vaccines aren’t perfect. We’re just trying to get the odds in our favor, from wearing masks to social distancing to, yes, getting vaccines.

Also, two plus two is four. And don’t play in traffic.

But we can look forward to wondering every day between now and the end of the season who it will be next, which player on this roster – perhaps the least-vaccinated roster in the NFL, according to reports – will test positive or be put on the reserve/COVID-19 list simply because, like Carson Wentz and Quenton Nelson and Ryan Kelly and Zach Pascal, they’ve not done the right thing for their teammates and their community and been vaccinated.

Carson Wentz is the worst of the bunch, in a football sense, because he’s the most important player on the team. He’s the most indispensable player on roster, and the Colts have no idea if he’ll make it through any given week without having to go back onto the COVID-19 list simply for being too close to a teammate who tests positive. I’ll remind you that, when the Colts acquired Wentz, I defended his arrival despite the reports out of Philadelphia that had called him a bad teammate. And selfish.

Well what do you know.

Turns out, Carson Wentz is a bad teammate. He’s selfish. Turns out he fits right into this Colts locker room.

Find IndyStar columnist Gregg Doyel on Twitter at @GreggDoyelStar or at www.facebook.com/gregg.doyel.

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This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: Colts: Carson Wentz among anti-vaccine Colts on NFL COVID-19 list

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