NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Titans have reason to believe they are better off than the majority of NFL teams when it comes to protection from COVID-19. They also learned Wednesday they are not free from the issues related to the virus.
As players took the field for the first full practice of training camp, general manager Jon Robinson said that 90 percent of them, which means at least 80 of the 90 on the roster, have been vaccinated.
However, one player, defensive back Chris Jones, was placed on the Reserve – COVID-19 list prior to the workout. Veteran defensive back Briean Boddy-Calhoun was signed to fill Jones’ spot. The Reserve-COVID list is for players who test positive for the virus or have been quarantined due to a close contact. Teams are prohibited from disclosing the reason for a player’s addition.
“We’re at 90 percent vaccinated,” Robinson told reporters. “That’s where we’re at. … I’m proud to say we’re at 90 percent, and I think that’s a good indication of what we feel about the vaccine as an organization.”
Robinson also revealed that the league office sent updated protocols to teams on Tuesday night that breaks players into four categories, based on their status with the vaccination. There are fully vaccinated players who have cleared the waiting period since they received the shot, players who are fewer than 14 days removed from having been vaccinated, players who have received one shot of one of the two-dose vaccines and players who have not been vaccinated at all.
Different rules are in place for those who fall into each category, including the requirement for some players to wear masks at times while on the practice field.
Among those who wore masks during the early portion of the workout was quarterback Ryan Tannehill.
“There’s protocols in place to protect the players, to protect the team, to protect the other teams in the league,” Robinson said. “That’s what we’ve said all along is the protocols and vaccinations are in place for player safety. There’s nothing more important than player safety, not just with our team but with the league in general and our families.
“… We continue to try to educate … [and] encourage our players to ask questions. We want to be an example for our community, for our state to encourage the vaccination.”