NFL fines Packers and unvaccinated players for COVID protocol violations
The Green Bay Packers were fined $300,000 and players Aaron Rodgers and Allen Lazard were each hit with $14,650 in penalties following an NFL review, the league announced Tuesday night.
Why it matters: The fines were issued for violations of the league and NFL Players Association COVID-19 protocols.
- The NFL announced the review Wednesday in the wake of Rodgers' positive test result. The Packers were "fully cooperative" in the investigation, according to an emailed statement from a league spokesperson.
The big picture: The NFL fined the players "for attending the Halloween party while unvaccinated according to the discipline schedule negotiated by the NFL & NFLPA," per the league statement.
- "Protocols prohibit unvaccinated players from gathering outside of the club facility in a group of more than three players," the statement added.
- "The party wasn’t sanctioned by the team but the league determined the club should have penalized both players," according to a tweet from NFL Media's Mike Garafolo.
- The Packers were fined for failing to report the violations to the NFL and for not disciplining Rodgers and Lazard, according to the league spokesperson.
Zoom in: The NFL investigation found other instances where the club failed to strictly enforce the protocols — notably over Rodgers failing to wear a mask at press conferences.
- "The league reviewed substantial video from club facility," the NFL spokesperson said.
- "While the review showed a few isolated instances of Rodgers and Allen Lazard failing to wear a mask in facility, they were substantially compliant otherwise. There [were] no widespread or systemic mask-wearing violations."
- Representatives for the Packers did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment over the action taken by the league, first reported by ESPN.
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Editor's note: This article has been updated with comment from the NFL.