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Will Aaron Rodgers and Packers face punishment from NFL? Here’s a look at the rules they might have violated

The Aaron Rodgers state of affairs has became a dicey one for the Inexperienced Bay Packers and that is as a result of the NFL is now reviewing whether Rodgers violated any COVID protocols over the previous few months. If the NFL finds that Rodgers did violate the league’s protocols, then Rodgers and the staff might each be looking at a probably severe punishment. 

For the Packers, the NFL has the best to high-quality the staff or take away draft picks. Final season, there have been a number of groups that acquired hit with huge fines and the 2 most notable ones have been the Raiders and the Saints. In New Orleans, not solely did the Saints get fined $700,000 for a number of COVID violations, however they also got docked a sixth-round draft pick

As for the Raiders, they got fined a total of $800,000 for multiple COVID violations and so they additionally acquired docked a sixth-round decide, however that decide ended up being reinstated in March after the staff appealed the choice (In each the Raiders and Saints instances, the groups have been fined $500,000 with gamers and coaches paying out the remainder of the fines). 

Not solely does the NFL have the facility at hand out a hefty high-quality or take away draft picks, however the league has already confirmed that it is not afraid to make use of that energy, which implies it would not be completely stunning if the NFL finally ends up punishing the Packers. 

On Rodgers’ finish, he might additionally face a punishment if he was purposely disregarding COVID protocols. In keeping with the protocols agreed to by the NFL and NFLPA, a participant is mostly fined $14,650 for a primary offense, but when there are repeated offenses, they can be fined a total of one game-check. In probably the most severe of circumstances, a participant could possibly be suspended for as much as 4 video games for conduct detrimental to the staff. 

So did the Packers and/or Rodgers truly violate any guidelines? The easy reply appears to be sure. 

Since Rodgers is unvaccinated, he’s speculated to be carrying a masks at any time when certainly one of his press conferences is held indoors on the staff facility. 

Right here is the precise rule from the NFL’s covid protocol handbook:  “All gamers and workers who are usually not absolutely vaccinated should put on masks (surgical masks are most popular; gaiters and masks with valves or vents are prohibited) always when contained in the Membership facility.”

Rodgers has usually been going maskless throughout his interviews, together with again in August when he advised the media that he was “immunized.” 

Rodgers might need been immunized, however he was by no means vaccinated. 

So what is the distinction? In accordance to NFL.com, Rodgers “acquired a homeopathic remedy from his private physician to boost his antibody ranges” and he hoped that will be sufficient to provide him the identical standing as a vaccinated participant. Nevertheless, the NFL shot down his request, so Rodgers is formally seen as unvaccinated within the eyes of the league. 

Though the masks rule appears to be the large one which Rodgers has disregarded, he additionally appears to have blatantly violated one other rule. The Packers quarterback spent months making an enormous deal of his Halloween costume earlier than exhibiting it off over the weekend at a celebration that a number of of his teammates additionally attended. 

Underneath NFL guidelines, an unvaccinated participant is not speculated to be at any occasion exterior the staff facility with greater than three whole gamers, “Unvaccinated Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 People (together with gamers) are prohibited from gathering in teams of greater than three (3) Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 People (together with gamers) exterior of the Membership facility or staff journey.” 

On this case, if there have been 4 Packers gamers on the occasion, then Rodgers violated the foundations. In keeping with Packers offensive lineman Lucas Patrick, he noticed each Marcedes Lewis and Bronson Kaufusi on the occasion and should you embrace Rodgers, that is a complete of 4 gamers. It is also been reported that Jordan Love was at the party, which places the quantity at 5 and primarily based on social media, there might need been greater than a dozen gamers in attendance, which might make this a serious violation for Rodgers. 

The NFL won’t drop the hammer on Rodgers for going maskless at his press conferences, nevertheless it would not be stunning if he is hit with a high-quality for the Halloween occasion. In 2020, Raiders tight finish Darren Waller got fined $30,000 for going maskless at a charity event that he planned. A number of different teammates, together with Derek Carr, additionally acquired fined.

If anybody does get punished, it sounds just like the Packers would obtain the brunt of it. When the NFL introduced that it was wanting into the Rodgers state of affairs, the league made positive to level out that it was as much as every membership to verify their gamers have been following COVID protocols.  

“The first duty for enforcement of the Covid protocols inside membership services rests with every membership,” the NFL mentioned in an announcement on Wednesday. “Failure to correctly implement the protocols has resulted in self-discipline being assessed towards particular person golf equipment prior to now. The league is conscious of the present state of affairs in Inexperienced Bay and will likely be reviewing the matter with the Packers.”

The underside line is that this can be a state of affairs that may worsen earlier than it will get higher for the Packers. Even when nobody will get punished, Rodgers cannot return till Nov. 13, which implies if he needs to play in Week 10 towards the Seahawks, he’ll be enjoying the sport after every week the place he acquired zero observe time. Additionally, if Rodgers reveals any signs, he could possibly be out even longer, which implies there’s an opportunity he might miss two video games (Weeks 9 and 10). 



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