Panthers LB Jermaine Carter jokes about NFL’s new COVID-19 rules

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The NFL isn’t mandating vaccinations against COVID-19, but they are making it pretty close to impossible to play without one.

In a memo released yesterday, the league announced harsh penalties for teams that have COVID outbreaks during the season. If a team is unable to play a game and it cannot be rescheduled within the 18-week timeframe, that team will forfeit. There will also be financial penalties and discipline from Commissioner Roger Goodell. Cancelled games will also result in players from both teams not getting their weekly paychecks. All together, it should be more than enough motivation for the league’s remaining unvaccinated players to get their shots.

Carolina Panthers linebacker Jermaine Carter Jr. summed it up pretty well with this joke he shared on Twitter.

This is true, but not everyone will go along. The most notable objection has come from Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who says he’s questioning his future in the NFL as a result. There also seems to be quite a bit of disagreement on the Buffalo Bills based on their Twitter interactions. Wide receiver Cole Beasley has been the most vocal critic of the league’s efforts to get vaccinated.

As for the Panthers, there haven’t been any public complaints as of yet. According to the Associated Press, they have one of the highest vaccination rates in the league.

Players had the option to opt out like last season, but none have chosen to do so.

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