Yesterday, Washington Football team head coach Ron Rivera expressed his disappointment that only just over 50% of his players have received COVID-19 vaccinations, falling behind the NFL's total of 85%.
"I think it's frustrating especially because last year we were the number one team in covid. and now for whatever reason we have some reluctancy to do that, to get the vaccine." Rivera said.
The irony, is about 200 yards away from the training field at the opening of camp, is a tent offering fans and the surrounding community an opportunity to get their vaccine. In fact, this tent is so close, you can hear the whistles from the practice field.
Mike Damon of Test Here Richmond wants to make vaccines easy and accessible.
"Today we were brought in in collaboration with the VA department of health and the Washington Football team to help vaccinate and help educate people with their options today in both testing and vaccines." Damon said.
Jahmil Foster isn't a Football team fan, but he ran over to get his vaccine on his lunch break from work.
"It's awesome. This was the kicker for me to come and do it because it was so available." Foster shared.
And this season, the NFL is laying down the law. Unvaccinated players must wear a mask at all times. They're imposing fines for refusing to submit to virus testing and they're forcing forfeits instead of cancellations for COVID outbreaks.
Ron Rivera hopes his team can avoid any COVID-related incidents.
"We're not where we want to be obviously, we have a lot of guys that have a lot of questions, unfortunately. They haven't gotten the answers that they should have by now. "
The Football Team players aren't alone in their hesitancy. There's plenty of people that still haven't decided to get their vaccine.
"The hardest part is educating everybody. People have a lot of questions, they're doing research on the internet and you've got to make sure you're looking at some credible things, talking to your physicians and anyone you feel is trustworthy in the healthcare world" Damon says.
Fans are hoping that the Football Team doesn't risk it.
"They gotta get vaccinated. That right there itself is going to push people to get vaccinated. Because like I said, culture wise, our team is not going to settle for a forefit" fan Lauren Strachan said.
After receiving his first vaccination, Jamil Foster had this message for the players.
"If you guys really care for your fans, your teammates, and for the great job that you guys have, get yourself vaccinated"