The Minnesota Vikings on Saturday, placed quarterbacks Kirk Cousins, Kellen Mond, and Nate Stanley on the reserve/COVID-19 list. This left Coach Mike Zimmer with only one healthy quarterback in camp, Jake Browning. It came to light that Mond contracted the virus and Cousins and Stanley were unvaccinated prior to their exposure. 

With several other key Vikings players, including Harrison Smith, Adam Thielen, and Sheldon Richardson unvaccinated, Zimmer, never known to mince his words, had this to say about the situation, “We could put this thing to bed if we’d all do this, but it is what it is.” 

NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Stills has provided information to NFL players on the importance of receiving the vaccination. But as Zimmer further said: “Some of them won’t do it… some of the things they’ve heard or read or been told… maybe they don’t believe what Dr. Sills told them either.” 

A new NFL rule clearly states: If a team is forced to cancel a game due to COVID-19 infections among its non-vaccinated players, that team forfeits the game and is credited with a loss. The guilty team will also be responsible for the opposing teams’ financial expenses and could face additional penalties. Finally, unvaccinated players are going to be assessed a $14,650 fine every time those protocols are violated. 

Why do players like Cousins, Cole Beasley of the Buffalo Bills, and DeAndre Hopkins of the Arizona Cardinals refuse to get vaccinated? Are they exercising their freedom as Americans to live independently? NO! They are being stupid and selfish. They are not only endangering the health and safety of those around them, but they could potentially force other players to lose part of their paycheck. 

Let’s examine Kirk Cousins’ overall thoughts about his chances of contracting COVID-19. Last season he said: “If I get it, I’m gonna ride it out. Survival-of-the-fittest kind of approach. And just say, if it knocks me out, it knocks me out. I’m going to be OK. You know, even if I die. If I die, I die. I kind of have peace about that.”  

Clearly Cousins thought at the time that his fitness and Superhuman powers would help him ward off this deadly virus. If that were the case, then Karl-Anthony TownsKevin Durant, Sydney Wiese, Usain Bolt, Novak Djokovic, and Alex Morgan would never have contracted the Coronavirus. C’mon on Kirk. Even you can’t be that short-sighted. 

This is the same guy who, in 2019, threw his rookie center, Garrett Bradbury, under the bus for having a sweaty posterior. Cousins said he could not grip the ball properly because of this. An embarrassed Bradbury just kind of shrugged his shoulders when asked by reporters about the situation. 

In 2017, Cousins showed his class when he played in a charity football game against a team led by former NFL Quarterback Doug Flutie. Late in the game with his team trailing, he shoved a referee for a supposed blown call. And after the game, he never went back and apologized to the ref. Class act Kirk. 

And as it turns out, Mike Zimmer and the Minnesota Vikings have an even bigger vaccination issue. The Associated Press just announced that the Minnesota Vikings have the lowest vaccination rate of any NFL team. According to the story, approximately 70 percent of Vikings players have received one dose of the COVID vaccine, and about 65 percent are fully vaccinated. 

The NFL has disclosed that 90 percent of its players have received at least a single dose and 27 teams have approximately 85 percent of its players who have received a single dose. By comparison, the team that had the league’s second-lowest vaccination rate, the Washington Football Team, just improved their single-dose vaccination rate to 84 percent after a personal plea by Coach Ron Rivera. This is an improvement of 14 percentage points in less than a week. 

Hence, the Minnesota Vikings have a problem with unvaccinated players like Kirk Cousins. Owner Zygi Wilf has also expressed his disappointment with the team’s low rate. Forfeited games are a real possibility if their team vaccination rate does not improve. Oh, and by the way, thanks for your smart leadership, Kirk 

Follow me on Twitter for more of my articles. In addition, check out other NFL articles by the Belly Up Pigskin Team.

About Author

Greg Simbeck

Freelance writer who loves telling an informative, creative, and compelling story. I am open to write about anything, but my emphasis is on sports in the Midwest. I look forward to telling you a good story and receiving your comments.


    Thanks for speaking out. Mind boggling.

      I agree. Unbelievable!

    Thanks for speaking out. Mind boggling. Sad to see Minnesota falling into this category.

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