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NFL's Allen Sills: Let's Not Get COVID Vaccine Info from Instagram or Facebook Posts

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJuly 23, 2021

Kiyoshi Mio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Dr. Allen Sills, the NFL's chief medical officer, urged players Friday to seek out information about COVID-19 vaccines from trusted medical sources.

"Let's not get information from Instagram or Facebook posts," Sills told reporters.

U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy told CNN's Dana Bash on Sunday that social media companies must work harder to combat misinformation that is posted on their platforms:

"Some of them have worked to try to, you know, up promote accurate sources like the CDC and other medical sources. Others have tried to reduce the prevalence of false sources and search results. But what I've also said to them, publicly and privately, is that it's not enough. That we are still seeing a proliferation of misinformation online. And we know that health misinformation harms people's health. It costs them their lives."

A study by the Cleveland Clinic showed 99.75 percent of people hospitalized in its Ohio hospitals because of COVID-19 during the first four months of 2021 weren't fully vaccinated, per Betty Lin-Fisher of the Akron Beacon Journal.

Sills also provided an update about the NFL's vaccination efforts, saying 80 percent of the league's players have received at least one shot.

"I think these are the safest and most effective vaccines that I've seen developed in the lifetime of my medical career," Sills said.

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Nicki Jhabvala @NickiJhabvala

Latest vaccination rate, per Dr. Allen Sills, the league's Chief Medical Officer:<br><br>Tier 1/Tier 2 coaches and staff are "virtually 100 percent vaccinated."<br><br>80% of all NFL players have at least one shot.<br><br>9 teams are at 90% or higher.<br><br>5 teams are below 70%.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to the league's 32 teams Thursday with information about potential punishments for a COVID-19 outbreak caused by unvaccinated players or staff members, including severe financial penalties and potential forfeiture of a game that can't be played because of coronavirus concerns.

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Cole Beasley, one of the NFL players most outspoken about not receiving the vaccine, made it clear the memo didn't change his mind:

Cole Beasley @Bease11

Nothing has changed. I’m still livin freely. Goodnight.

Arizona Cardinals wideout DeAndre Hopkins said Thursday in a tweet he later deleted that he was starting to "question" his future in the NFL based on the vaccination protocols. He later walked back talk of retirement and suggested he could play for nearly another decade:

Deandre Hopkins @DeAndreHopkins

Btw I got about 9 more years in me, y’all have a good day 😎

ESPN's Courtney Cronin reported Friday that Minnesota Vikings offensive line coach Rick Dennison has parted ways with the organization after refusing to receive the vaccine, which is required for all Tier 1 staff members, including coaches, unless they have a medical or religious reason for not being vaccinated that is deemed legitimate.

NFL training camps began to open this week, and the first preseason contest, the Hall of Fame Game between the Dallas Cowboys and Pittsburgh Steelers, is set for Aug. 5.

The regular season gets underway Sept. 9 when the Cowboys visit the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

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