By ROB MAADDI, AP Pro Football Writer
The NFL is requiring coaches, reception staff and team staff to receive a COVID-19 reminder by December 27.
In a note sent to teams on Monday and obtained by The Associated Press, the league said, “Given the increased prevalence of the virus in our communities, our experts have recommended that we implement the CDC’s recommendation.”
The league requirement extends to all level 1 and level 2 people who have ever received the vaccine. Although players are in the Level 1 designation with coaches and coaches, the mandate does not apply to players as discussions with the NFL Players Association are ongoing.
The CDC recommends that a person who received a second injection of Pfizer or Moderna to complete the primary vaccine series more than six months earlier should be given a booster injection. A person who received a single dose of Johnson & Johnson more than two months earlier should be given a booster injection.
The following do not necessarily have to meet the requirement:
– A person who is not eligible for a recall as defined by the CDC.
– A person who is on a 90-day trial vacation after a COVID-19 test confirmed positive according to league protocols.
– A person who has received monoclonal antibodies within the previous 90 days.
– A person whose âSâ antibody level on an antibody test administered via BRL (BioReference Lab) on club premises is 2,500 or more.
The league says anyone who is not currently subject to the boosters requirement will need to get the booster within 14 days of being eligible.
Teams have been urged to provide booster injections to all eligible level staff as soon as possible and to consider making booster injections available to families and cohabitants of players and staff.
On Monday, 36 players, a high for the season, were placed on the league’s COVID-19 roster.
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has raised the possibility of players becoming complacent in the face of the virus.
âThat’s it. That’s the whole problem all over the world,â Carroll said. âPeople are getting tired of it. We just can’t. We can’t let this happen. Even though everyone else is. world is human and reminders wear you down. It’s stressful when you have to continually be reminded and thinking about something you wouldn’t normally do. It is wearing out on you, and we try to avoid it. ways to get out of it. It’s the conversation we hear all the time, it’s the national clamor.
âIt’s about being diligent. Due diligence comes from constant reminders and the discipline it takes to stick to it.
Last month, the NFL demanded that players and staff wear masks inside team facilities regardless of their immunization status for a week, and ordered that they be tested twice for COVID- 19 after the Thanksgiving holidays. League protocols were later updated due to rising rates of COVID-19 across the country. At the time, nearly 95% of NFL players were vaccinated and almost 100% of NFL staff were vaccinated.
The league has performed genetic sequencing tests on the positive cases to determine the exact strains of the virus. NFL Medical Director Allen Sills said in November that these tests showed a club had eight positive cases within two weeks, but each case was unrelated, meaning the individuals have been exposed to the virus by someone outside the institution.
âIt shows that our protocols are working and doing what they’re designed to do, which is to prevent the virus from spreading uncontrollably among teams,â Sills said.
But the most recent figures are alarming, especially on Monday.
“Here we go, we are in the last month of the season and we have a chance to qualify,” said Carroll. âI don’t know what’s going to happen after today, but everyone has to be reminded all the time. Stop complaining about it. Stop complaining about being healthy and helping others to be healthy. I do not understand. That beats me.
âIt’s so far from personal rights. I do not understand. … It’s constant like anything we’ve ever known. We just have to do a good job. I must do better. I have to remind the guys more.
This article has been corrected. A previous version incorrectly stated that players would be required to obtain boosters. Although players are level 1 staff, the mandate does not apply to players as such a requirement must be negotiated with their union.
AP Pro Football writer Barry Wilner contributed to this report.
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