With vaccines readily available in the United States, the National Football League is cracking down on any COVID-19 outbreaks caused by unvaccinated players. Under new rules announced Thursday, teams experiencing a COVID outbreak will be forced to forfeit any games that can’t be rescheduled during the 18-week season. “For the purposes of playoff seeding, the forfeiting team will be credited with a loss and the other team will be credited with a win,” read a memo sent by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Teams responsible for the canceled games could also face financial penalties plus additional sanctions if it’s found the outbreak was caused by a “failure by club personnel to follow applicable protocols.” The memo doesn’t outright state that vaccines are a requirement to play during the season but stands very much in favor of them. “We know that vaccines are safe and effective, and are the best step anyone can take to be safe from the coronavirus,” the memo says.
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