Washington places three players on COVID-19 list
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The Washington Football Team’s low vaccination rate has been a topic of discussion as training camp in Richmond has gotten underway, and Thursday provided a window into what issues could be caused by many players moving forward without immunization.
The team announced that Matt Ioannidis, Chris Miller and Curtis Samuel have been placed on the reserve/ COVID-19 list.
The defensive tackle Ioannidis was seen practicing with the team during Thursday morning’s session, but left the field early. Samuel, a wide receiver, is one of Washington’s biggest offseason pick-ups. Miller is a cornerback who was signed this past spring after being cut by Arizona.
Washington entered training camp with one of the lowest vaccination rates in the league. Michael Phillips of the Richmond Times Dispatch reported on Wednesday that eight of the 11 projected defensive starters have not received their shots.
Ron Rivera expressed his frustration at the team’s lack of vaccinations during his training camp opening news conference on Tuesday.
“I’m truly frustrated,” the head coach said. “I’m beyond frustrated. The reason I walked in with the mask on is I’m immune-deficient.”
“We’re hopefully trending in the right direction,” he added. “We’ve had a few guys get there [shots]. I believe we’re over 50 percent, so we’re trending in the right direction. We’re not where we want to be, obviously.”
While vaccinated and unvaccinated players alike have said they’ll respect every teammates’ decision, it will be interesting to see how the locker room holds up in the event star players are forced to quarantine or if the squad is forced into forfeiting a game.
“I’ve had plenty of guys engage me in conversation, questions, guys that have been vaccinated, guys that haven’t been vaccinated,” said quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. “I just try to open honest discussion about what I think. It is a personal choice. That’s the end of the discussion for me. I’m going to respect whatever you do.”
Fitzpatrick, who has seven children, noted that all of his children who are old enough to be vaccinated have gotten their shots and the plan is for the younger children to do the same once eligible.
Washington continues training camp in Richmond through Saturday.
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