Vikings Coach Reportedly Out After Refusing COVID Vaccine
Minnesota Vikings offensive line coach Rick Dennison is no longer with the team after refusing to get the COVID-19 vaccine, according to ESPN.
Dennison was considered Tier 1 according to the NFL's protocols. Tier 1 employees, which includes all coaches, executives, locker room personnel and scouts, are required to get vaccinated per league policy.
Dennison had been the offensive line coach and run game coordinator for the past two seasons.
The NFL's vaccine policy has been a hot topic lately, with Arizona Cardinals wideout DeAndre Hopkins speaking out on Twitter earlier this week. The league announced that COVID outbreaks among unvaccinated players could result in forfeits and both teams losing pay for the week.
"Never thought I would say this, but being put in a position to hurt my team because I don’t want to partake in the vaccine is making me question my future in the NFL," Hopkins tweeted.
After deleting the Tweet he posted a follow up that said only "freedom?"
According to ESPN, 16 NFL teams have hit a vaccination rate of 85% or higher.
The Vikings will have their first full-team practice on Wednesday, July 28th in Eagan. The preseason gets underway with a game against the Denver Broncos on August 14th.
The regular season begins on September 12th when the Vikings take on the Bengals in Cincinnati. This season will feature 17 regular season games for the first time in league history.