Richmond– Ron Rivera Wearing a mask and walking into the media room his The first face-to-face press conference with reporters in more than a year. he He hesitated before taking it off. “You are vaccinated, right?” This Washington The coach asked.
After battling cancer for a few months, Rivera examined one reason: He revealed that he was believed to be immunodeficient-which puts him at a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 from the virus.
This is why, when given the opportunity, Rivera will vaccinate the players because of hesitation-perhaps outright rejection -. As Washington was preparing for Wednesday’s first training camp training, it was reported that the team’s vaccination rate was the lowest in the league, as only 60% of its players had been vaccinated at least once. Rivera did not confirm this figure, but said that the group was “more than 50%.”
In contrast, 80% of the players in the league have received at least one shot. According to NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills, nine teams have exceeded the 90% threshold.
“I’m really frustrated,” Rivera said. “I am very frustrated. …with this new (delta) variant, who knows? So, when I am in a group and the group is not vaccinated or has a mixture, I will wear a mask, out of health The reason I do this, because no one really knows. I have to do it. “I just hope, I want our people to understand this. “
Rivera insisted that he would not “tell anyone what to do”, but he made it clear that the risk facing Washington is that the longer the team stays without vaccinations for most of the players. He mentioned the incident with the Broncos last year, when Denver played against the New Orleans Saints. After all the signalers were forced to isolate, they were forced to start catching the ball at the quarterback position.
Washington has been trying to get players vaccinated.
In June, Washington invited a famous immunologist to give a presentation on vaccination. But Rivera said on Tuesday that many players still “have a lot of questions, unfortunately” and “have not got the answer yet.”
The coach said that the situation is particularly frustrating as the team successfully prevented coronavirus cases in 2020. Last season, only two players in Washington tested positive for the virus this season-Rivera said they were the fewest players in the league. With the exception of former starter Dwayne Haskins, who was fined twice for breaking the rules, the team basically followed the rules of the league.
Washington has made some progress in getting players vaccinated, and Rivera said the team is “going in the right direction.” The Associated Press reported on July 16 that the Burgundy and Gold teams are among the four teams with a vaccination rate of less than 50%. On Friday, the league stated that only five teams scored below 70%.
However, athletes in football and all sports are obviously skeptical of shooting.
On the defensive end, Montes Sweet told reporters in June that he “didn’t like” Washington’s information push, but added that he would not be vaccinated until he got more answers. In the league, there are other high-profile players, such as Arizona’s DeAndre Hopkins and Buffalo’s Cole Beasley, who question the effectiveness of the vaccine.
If there is a gap between the vaccinated and the unvaccinated, Rivera admits that this situation may cause tension in the locker room. After all, football is a team sport-coaches promote unity and sacrifice for the greater good.
Last week, the National Football League stated in a memo that canceling games due to the coronavirus outbreak of unvaccinated players will result in the forfeiture of games and loss of salary.
“If there is no competition, you will not only risk your own salary, but also take other people’s salary,” Rivera said. “I think this is something we all must consider.”
Rivera said he understands that the final shot is the player’s choice. Having said that, he added that he wants players to “queue” and understand what is at stake.
“I hope they can understand the impact of not being vaccinated,” Rivera said. “You want to believe all the news about people being hospitalized. The people who are now dying from the new coronavirus are those who have not been vaccinated.”