NFL not planning for COVID-19 vaccines before Super Bowl

With reports circulating that the NHL is planning for private purchases of available COVID-19 vaccines, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has told reporters that his league won’t be pursuing any vaccinations before Super Bowl LV occurs on Feb. 7. 

“We are not planning on any of our personnel being vaccinated in advance of the Super Bowl,” Goodell explained, according to Jenna Laine of ESPN.

“That’s obviously being done at higher levels and given priority to obviously healthcare workers, first-responders and those that are in the riskiest state. We don’t fall into those categories, so we don’t anticipate that and we’re not planning for that.”  

The Super Bowl remains set to occur at Raymond James Stadium, home of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which has been filled to 25% capacity for NFL games this fall. 

“We’re going to try to bring in as many fans as we can safely do into Raymond James Stadium,” Goodell said of welcoming paying patrons to the Super Bowl. “I’m not sure there is a specific number that we are confident saying, ‘This is what it will be,’ but obviously our focus will be on keeping them safe, whoever’s in.”

Super Bowl week’s opening night that includes players speaking with media members will be converted to a virtual experience. Goodell also said that teams could arrive to Tampa ahead of the game later than usual to avoid potential virus spread among personnel. 

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