The Slatest

Unvaccinated Buffalo Bills Player Blasts NFL COVID Protocols: “I’d Rather Die Actually Living”

Wide receiver Cole Beasley #11 of the Buffalo Bills during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on November 15, 2020 in Glendale, Arizona.
Wide receiver Cole Beasley #11 of the Buffalo Bills during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on November 15, 2020 in Glendale, Arizona. Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Cole Beasley is making it clear that all the backlash to his anti-vaccine stance is not going to make him change his mind. In a note posted on Twitter, Beasley insisted he has no plans to get the vaccine and will “live my one life like I want to regardless.” Beasley said he won’t abide by any special requirements that have been laid out by the NFL for players who choose not to get vaccinated. “I will be outside doing what I do. I’ll be out in the public. If your scared of me then steer clear, or get vaccinated. Point. Blank. Period,” he wrote. “I may die of covid, but I’d rather die actually living.”

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As far as Beasley is concerned, getting vaccinated is akin to taking “meds for a leg that isn’t broken.” The 32-year-old added that he’d “rather take my chances with Covid and build up my immunity that way.” He added that he’s willing to “play for free this year to live life how I’ve lived it from day one” and if he’s “forced into retirement, so be it.” Beasley claims a lot of players agree with him but “aren’t in the right place in their careers to be so outspoken.”

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Earlier Beasley had said he had talked to the NFL Players Association after he publicly complained about the new COVID-19 protocols that pretty much allows vaccinated players to live a normal life during training camp and the preseason while those who are unvaccinated have to adhere to lots of different rules. “Now we have spoken and are working through it,” he wrote in a separate tweet. “From what I’m told these are guidelines for preseason and it’s nothing final.”

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Beasley has now become “the face of the NFL’s anti-vax movement,” writes USA Today columnist Jarrett Bell. Even though Beasley may be the most outspoken, he’s hardly the only player to say he doesn’t want to be vaccinated. Some coaches are even enlisting outside help from experts to try to convince players to get vaccinated although that seems to have done little to change the mind of the most recalcitrant players. Washington defensive end Montez Sweat, for example, was not swayed by a talk by a vaccine expert. “I’m not a fan of it at all,” Sweat said afterward. “I won’t get vaccinated until I get more facts.”

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