The Washington Football Team has missed the likes of being at full strength. On Thursday, they inched closer in returning back to normal.
WFT announced they have activated both guard Brandon Scherff and defensive tackle Daron Payne from the reserve/COVID-19 list. The two were placed into protocol last week, though Payne stated via social media that he did not test positive for the virus.
Last weekend, Scherff was removed from Saturday's practice in Richmond and placed on the list shortly after following testing positive. Earlier that week, he stated that he did not receive the vaccine as of this time.
“It’s a personal decision for me,” Scherff told reporters last Friday while wearing a mask, a requirement for unvaccinated players. “It’s a personal decision for everybody. Nobody’s made a deal of it. We’re all here to play football and that’s what we’re doing.”
With both Scherff and Payne back on the active roster, Washington has just two players remaining on the reserve/COVID-19 list. One is offensive tackle David Sharpe and the other is wide receiver Curtis Samuel.
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Washington had as many as seven players on the reserve/COVID-19 list earlier this week. Prior to Payne and Scherff's return, WFT activated offensive tackle Cornelius Lucas, cornerback Chris Miller and defensive lineman Matt Ioannidis.
WFT head coach Ron Rivera has been adamant about encouraging players to receive the vaccine. Earlier this training camp, Washington was among one of the lowest rates of players with at least one dose of the vaccine, falling just above 70%.
According to ESPN's John Keim, the team has increase its vaccination rate, jumping to now 84% of its players with at least one shot entering the weekend.
"It was a good step in the right direction, and we're continuing to trend up," Rivera said Wednesday.
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