NFL's Chief Medical Officer Fires Back at Aaron Rodgers on COVID-19 Protocols

Aaron Rodgers has been outspoken about the NFL's COVID-19 protocols. He believes the rules that are put in place are not based on science and data. NFL chief medical officer Allen Sills spoke to reporters on Wednesday and responded to Rodgers' claims. 

"We've been very consistent," Sills told reporters, per USA Today. "First of all, these are things that we decided collectively with the players association (NFLPA). They're always based on science. The science that at best we understand for public health, but also our own data. We are constantly looking at our own data in every way possible, to see where we might still be vulnerable and what parts of our protocols we think are particularly effective. So, we're very comfortable with what we've put in place being driven by our data and is working."  

Rodgers, who tested positive for COVID-19 two weeks ago, appeared on The Pat McAfee Show on Nov. 5 and called out the NFL for its COVID-19 protocols. "Some of the rules to me are not based in science at all," said Rodgers, two days after he tested positive for COVID-19 and began a mandatory 10-day quarantine that would force him to miss one game. "They are based purely in trying to out and shame people, like needing to wear a mask at a podium when everyone in the room is vaccinated and wearing a mask makes no sense to me." When Rodgers tested positive for COVID-19, it was discovered he was unvaccinated. Rodgers and the Packers were later fined for violating COVID-19 protocols.

This comes as the NFL is strengthening its protocols due to the increase of COVID-19 cases across the country. "This upward trend, coupled with the onset of colder weather driving individuals indoors, has resulted in an increased risk of infection among players and staff," a memo issued to the 32 NFL stated, per USA Today. "Our experts and data confirm that getting vaccinated remains our strongest defense against contracting and transmission of the virus within club facilities.

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"In light of this uptick in positive tests throughout the country and based on consultation with our experts and collective experience, we are making the following changes to the Protocols and are sharing additional best practices."