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The NFL Has Gone As Far As It Can on Vaccinations

The NFL has gone as far as it can to compel players to get vaccinated against COVID-19, without explicitly requiring it. Players or team personnel who are unvaccinated will be subject to different individual protocols for the 2021 season than those who are vaccinated, but the memo the league issued to its member teams Thursday went a step further, delineating steeper consequences for potential outbreaks of the virus among unvaccinated players.

The memo makes clear that the NFL does not intend to add a 19th week to the schedule, and if a game cannot be rescheduled within the 18-week framework and thus must be canceled due to an outbreak of unvaccinated players, that club will forfeit the game.