1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

NFL COVID Rules Are Inconsistent

Discussion in 'Miami Dolphins Forum' started by Galant, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    So Shaheen is out 10 days minimum. I was curious what was going on because Tweets suggested that this was because he was unvaccinated and that the rules were difference for vaccinated players. So I took a look.

    Here are the pertinent rules:
    (LINK)

    • If a vaccinated person tests positive and is asymptomatic, he or she will be isolated and contact tracing will promptly occur. The positive individual will be permitted to return to duty after two negative tests at least 24-hours apart and will thereafter be tested every two weeks or as directed by the medical staffs. Vaccinated individuals will not be subject to quarantine as a result of close contact with an infected person.
    • If an unvaccinated person tests positive, the protocols from 2020 will remain in effect. The person will be isolated for a period of 10 days and will then be permitted to return to duty if asymptomatic. Unvaccinated individuals will continue to be subject to a five-day quarantine period if they have close contact with an infected individual.
    • Persons who had a previous Covid infection will be considered fully vaccinated 14 days after they have had at least one dose of an approved vaccine.


    I don't want to turn this into a general COVID debate but the specific NFL rules are inconsistent and don't make sense outside of using leverage to get players vaccinated.

    Why? Because, while the vaccine can make it less likely to get a serious infection and less likely to catch certain variants, it doesn't prevent infection. Similarly, even though it reduces chance of spreading it doesn't remove the possibility; any infected player could spread the infection.

    As such, once a player or staff member is infected, they're essentially in the same position in terms of risking infection. At that point, isolation and a negative test are what you're looking at. Once you have a negative test you're good to go. You will also have some stronger immunity to the infection, to some degree.

    If the NFL wants to ensure that football carries on as normal, as far as possible, then they're going to want to quarantine infected players, and wait for negative tests. You don't want infected players or staff, outside quarantine. Yet, the NFL rules specifically allow for it. Vaccinated players not having to be quarantined makes no sense. Nor, in fact, does quarantining unvaccinated players - where a test is available. If you can test for the infection then quarantine is useful before the test, or in case of a positive test. That's all.

    Allowing vaccinated players to roam free even if they've been in close contact contradicts the idea they're trying to keep a tight lid on this. It's actually possible an infected person spreads it to a vaccinated person who can then carry on spreading it.

    The best option for the NFL, if they want to control it as much as possible, if for all players and staff, regardless of vaccination status, to be tested regularly. Negatives carry on, positives isolate. Where testing is possible, it's that simple.

    As for the idea that single shot allows as person previously infected to count as fully vaccinated - that's nonsense. Vaccinated is vaccinated. You follow whatever instructions for the specific vaccine. Sure, previous infection offers immunity to some degree, and it will vary, but the idea that previous infection + one shot = vaccinated.... it's just made up. There's no way to measure that. It seems clear that the league just wants to reach 100% vaccinated status. Maybe for publicity, maybe some other reason. Maybe they're under pressure since so many people watch football, it puts out a good message.

    Regardless, in terms of football, they're inconsistent. The league is essentially making a decision to worsen the game so that it can make a stance on this issue. There's no reason to hold out players who test negative. Let them test the players and then let them play. Hold out infected players only. End of story.
     
    Fin-O likes this.
  2. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    Galant, this isn't about consistency. COVID-19 outbreaks last season forced games to be postponed and teams to close their practice facilities. The NFL understands that a successful season depends on near total compliance for vaccination, which is why they've made the penalties far worse for the unvaccinated. You didn't even list them all. It's actually mandatory for all "tier one" team staff (coaches, scouts, equipment managers, etc.) to be vaccinated. Vaccinated players also won't be tested as often as the unvaccinated, etc.

    There's nothing wrong with this. The NFL can't have the uncertainty over whether they can complete the season they had last year. So from a pure business perspective it makes total sense to get near total compliance. They're at 93% compliance among players and 99% compliance among staff, so they're close. The NFL hasn't even gone as far as many businesses have where vaccination is mandatory. This is purely a business decision, and a wise one.
     
    KeyFin likes this.
  3. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

    8,654
    10,851
    113
    Nov 1, 2009
    Read the rule again in what I've left above. It does not say, "sick vaccinated players don't have to quarantine". It says if you're around an infected person and you're vaccinated, you don't have to quarantine. What's implied there is that you don't have COVID....just potential exposure.

    The part I actually disagree with is that the unvaccinated who catch COVID are fully vaccinated after one shot- I'd argue that they may be fully vaccinated anyway. My 20 year old had COVID back in November though and when she recently gave blood, she still shows antibodies after no additional vaccinations. So I think the NFL is going with the best science they have available to them and it is definitely not 100% conclusive either way. I do believe that they're trying to keep players/staff safe though.

    You have to remember, people like Belichek fall into the "high risk" category just off age alone. There are lots of dinosaurs in the league, owners included, and the laws need to protect everyone. It's an impossible situation when this is so politicized...that's the actual problem here, not the science that's still playing catch-up.
     
  4. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    You miss the point. They specifically are not doing all they can to limit outbreaks. If they wanted to do that they would have everyone test regularly.

    Their stance is clearly geared to incentivise/pressure everyone yo be vaccinated however, that isn't the same as doing the maximum to prevent outbreaks. This way of doing it means that they're more concerned with the appearance of protection than the actual protection itself.
     
    Fin-O likes this.
  5. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    If they had 100% vaccination rate among players and staff and there's an outbreak, I don't think they need to cancel/postpone games. That's the difference. The virus will keep infecting people vaccinated or not. But the vaccinated don't get seriously sick except rarely now. So the NFL wouldn't have to cancel games as a result. Hence the incentives.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2021
  6. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    That makes no sense. Who are they protecting?

    They aren't doing this because they're concerned some players might get seriously sick. That's on them.

    Stopping players from playing without symptoms because you're concerned they'd get seriously ill is the reverse of the plan. They're already removing them from the game. Thus hindering games. Plus you can't stop them from getting sick. You'd have to rule them out completely.

    If the league didn't care about infections alone then they would have no reason to cancel games unless there were serious infections. Games aren't cancelled for lack of players.
     
  7. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    Not sure what's not making sense here. There's a clear benefit to ~100% vaccination rate because you wouldn't need to worry about outbreaks anymore. That's where the NFL wants to go. They could do it by mandating the vaccine, but they chose not to (except for some key staff). Given that they decided not to, you either incentivize vaccination or you don't. They're incentivizing it at the expense of doing everything possible to prevent outbreaks which would treat vaccinated and unvaccinated equally (in that regard).

    Makes total sense to me. I would have just mandated vaccination and be done with it.
     
  8. Dol-Fan Dupree

    Dol-Fan Dupree Tank? Who is Tank? I am Guy Incognito. Club Member

    38,566
    30,237
    113
    Dec 11, 2007
    Yea, they stick players with so many experimental drugs it is weird that the NFLPA would take a stance against the vaccine
     
  9. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    What do you mean no outbreaks? What's an 'outbreak'? People getting infected? How many? That can still happen. It doesn't necessarily stop any games. Are they interested in infections or in players getting seriously ill?

    The rules permit potentially infected people to carry on without quarantine or checks but they penalise people who don't get vaccinated instead of just testing them.

    If they don't care about infection rate then let players who can play play and those who are too sick to play don't play, just like with any other illness.
     
  10. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    It stopped games last year. Why? Imagine the legal issues the NFL would face if they just let unvaccinated players who are infected continue playing without quarantine and someone dies. That's not happening if they're all vaccinated. The incentives make sense.
     
  11. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    Who's going to die in this scenario? The unvaccinated players or the vaccinated?
    The unvaccinated cannot give the vaccinated some special version of the disease.
    The vaccinated are much less likely to get a serious infection.
    The unvaccinated are far more likely to be the ones dying.
    But they know the risk and chose to remain unvaccinated. The NFL isn't to blame for them not being vaccinated.
    In addition, none of of this has to do with playing games. Symptomatic players aren't going to be playing games.
    And then beyond this, the league can simply test for infections and isolate those players. By choosing to allow vaccinated but potentially infected players to avoid checks, and by not choosing simply to test all players, the league are NOT doing everything they can to monitor this.

    The league cannot say they're doing all they can. They're more concerned with appearance than reality.
     
  12. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    Unvaccinated of course. NFL would be in serious legal trouble if they let unvaccinated and infected individuals continue playing and one of them died as a result. Anyway, I've already explained what seems to be a very sane calculus by the NFL. If you don't agree that's fine, but this is a smart business decision as far as I can tell.
     
  13. Galant

    Galant Love - Unity - Sacrifice - Eternity Staff Member Club Member

    16,293
    9,662
    113
    Apr 22, 2014
    I'm not sure I agree with your legal assessment.

    Either way, it still doesn't square with their rules. If you're concerned about the unvaccinated why not test them instead of a default waiting period. And why not test the vaccinated. As it stands they are letting potentially infected people run around when they have the ability to test.

    And of course, having gone to all this effort they could have unvaccinated players sign a declaration that the league is not responsible for illness and injury arising from their lack of vaccination.

    It's not a legal issue. At least not primarily.
     
  14. cbrad

    cbrad .

    8,809
    10,387
    113
    Dec 21, 2014
    There are already hundreds of wrongful death lawsuits filed for precisely that reason: not providing a safe enough working environment given that the company knew about the dangers of COVID-19. Granted, those cases are still ongoing, but do you want to be responsible for making a decision that could be a calamitous event for the NFL? No.. you definitely make sure you're on the safe side there. So just from that point of view it's a good business decision.

    Unvaccinated players are tested every day. That's the most at risk group. Vaccinated every week. Testing the most at risk group every day is more than enough cover for the NFL in a legal challenge IMO.
    https://www.startribune.com/nfls-co...or-the-vaccinated-and-unvaccinated/600094086/
     
    KeyFin likes this.
  15. Dol-Fan Dupree

    Dol-Fan Dupree Tank? Who is Tank? I am Guy Incognito. Club Member

    38,566
    30,237
    113
    Dec 11, 2007
    One thing to remember is that a lot of the negotiations of the rules were before the Delta Variant was known and became the dominant strain in the US.

    Pre Delta the rules make a lot of sense
     
  16. KeyFin

    KeyFin Season Ticket Holder Club Member

    8,654
    10,851
    113
    Nov 1, 2009
    The difference between Delta and the other variants is the infection rate- other variants spread similar to the common cold or flu (a sick person spreads it to 1.5 people, 1.5:1) and Delta spreads on the level of chicken pox (roughly 8:1 or even higher). At that rate, it's not "if" you'll get vaccinated by vaccine or natural immunity, it's when.

    If Delta lasts another six months, I have a feeling we'll be close to 100% immunity either way.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2021
  17. Dol-Fan Dupree

    Dol-Fan Dupree Tank? Who is Tank? I am Guy Incognito. Club Member

    38,566
    30,237
    113
    Dec 11, 2007
    The other difference is that the Delta is more vaccine-resistant.
     
    KeyFin likes this.
  18. Fin-O

    Fin-O Initiated Club Member

    11,032
    10,806
    113
    Sep 28, 2015
    I doubt any NFL player who had it has ever been or ever will be, seriously sick..
     
  19. Finatik

    Finatik Season Ticket Holder Club Member

    2,470
    2,331
    113
    May 2, 2014
    SO Cal
    True but now it's just the flu for the vax'd. The rest of the freedom fighters are just prolonging their agony. Let them toil in their own stupidity, lose in game paychecks and eventually their jobs. The number one trait for your team is availability. Why keep paying you if you're not available to play not because of injurie, because you wouldn't get out of you're own way.
     
  20. Fin-O

    Fin-O Initiated Club Member

    11,032
    10,806
    113
    Sep 28, 2015
    well if that’s the choice they make it’s not up to us to judge them. this isn’t some cut and dry unequivocal situation, this is something that deserves to be debated and not automatically excepted.

    I think the NFL rule is kind of silly and lacks in logic, but that’s me.

    I’m not sure it’s a trigger anybody either way but it seemingly has a lot of people very angry and that to me it’s kind of funny
     
    KeyFin likes this.
  21. Finatik

    Finatik Season Ticket Holder Club Member

    2,470
    2,331
    113
    May 2, 2014
    SO Cal
    I'm not really judging them. I don't care anymore except these unvax'd are causing me to wear a stupid mask that doesn't do chit. If your Vax'd, it's like getting the flu now and I never worried about the flu or wore a mask to prevent it. I've seen too many of my friend and co-workers struggle with the after effects. It didn't kill them or put them in the hospital but the lingering effects are something no one talks about. 3rd jab - sign me up.

    If they want to play Russian roulette so be, I'm all for choice - but all choices have consequences. They are impacting the team with their availability status. If he doesn't get on board the train he just might find out that the train has left the station without a 4th string TE. Then him and Cam Newton can hang out and talk about how the NFL and life is so unfair.
     
  22. Fin-O

    Fin-O Initiated Club Member

    11,032
    10,806
    113
    Sep 28, 2015
    If Cole Beasley infects Stefon Diggs next week I’ll be a happy man
     

Share This Page