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NFL to Fine Unvaccinated Players $14,650 for COVID-19 Protocol Violations

The NFL will fine unvaccinated players $14,650 any time they violate COVID-19 procedures this season, the NFL told ESPN's Jenna Laine. 

The confirmation comes after Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians was mentioned in a report from the Tamp Bay Times saying that he would fine his players "$14,000 on the spot every time he isn't wearing a mask or is breaking a protocol."

Arians told ESPN it wasn't his own policy but "league rules" in a text. NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy confirmed the number to ESPN and that it is a league rule. 

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This comes just two days after the NFL announced it would enforce forfeits in the event of a COVID-19 cancellation. Additionally, some players and coaches have been hesitant on getting vaccinated. Vikings offensive line coach Rick Dennison was dismissed for refusing the vaccine.

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero obtained the NFL's COVID-19 protocols for this upcoming season in June that also mentioned punishments for players. Although the $14,650 figure wasn't mentioned for a protocols violation, a fine for contact tracing violations was mentioned. 

Any player who refuses to cooperate or lies during a contact tracing interview can be fined equal to one week's paycheck or up to $50,000 for a first offense. Fines will rise thereafter. 

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