The NFL Players Association (NFLPA) has filed a proposal with the NFL to change the standards for when a player is tested for the human papilloma virus (HPV). Currently, a player must be tested every six months, but the NFLPA is proposing that a player who has been vaccinated with the HPV vaccine be tested only once every 12 months.

The National Football League Players Association is calling on the NFL to up its vaccination protocols for players, a report via SportsBusiness Journal  says. The NFLPA is proposing that players be required to get two shots of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine every year, instead of the current requirement of one every three years.

The NFL Players Association is suggesting that vaccinated players be tested more often than current procedures demand in its latest round of talks with the NFL about COVID-19 guidelines for the 2021 season.

Vaccinated athletes are only required to be tested for COVID-19 every 14 days, while unvaccinated players are required to be tested every day. The players’ union would want to test more often, such as every five days, but the exact number is still up for debate.

At training camp on Tuesday, NFLPA president and Cleveland Browns center JC Tretter told ESPN, “I believe we have to.” “If we don’t, I believe we’re setting ourselves up for failure. It’s impossible to spend 13 days without checking individuals in the building for breakthrough cases and, more recently, the potential of vaccinated persons to transmit the Delta version. Because you’re not testing individuals, you’ll start receiving positives and won’t know where they came from, and it’s just not worth the risk.”

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The NFL said on Tuesday that 90% of its players have been completely immunized or have received at least one shot. Nine clubs have vaccinated more than 95% of their players, while 27 have immunized more than 85%. As a result, a new vaccination testing schedule would impact the overwhelming majority of the league. Vaccinated players, on the other hand, would be permitted to join the team facilities while their test results were being decided, but unvaccinated players would have to wait for their findings to come back before entering.

“I don’t believe it’s a difficult ask to test for 60 seconds as you come into the building,” Tretter said. “I believe men would be angry if it said, ‘You have to MESA test and wait 40 minutes in your vehicle.’”

On an NFLPA conference call last week to discuss the subject of more regular testing of immunized players, there was some resistance from players. However, union leadership is attempting to emphasize to its members that protocol modifications are the consequence of fresh data and information continuously surfacing.

Internally and with the league, the union is still debating its demand for more regular testing of immunized players, and it’s unclear what will come of those talks. However, Tretter warned that the procedures would change as the season progresses.

“Where we began in training camp and where we finished in Week 17 were two very different locations for the procedures last year, and the same should be expected this year,” Tretter said. “Every day, we discover something new about delta. Those procedures will be significantly different depending on where we start training camp and where we finish the season. That isn’t to say it was a failure or that we didn’t do our hardest. It simply means that we kept following the new facts and research we had acquired in order to place ourselves in the best possible position to have a season.”

When vaccinated people are given new rules that make them feel like they’re going backward, Tretter understands it’s a difficult sale, as it is in society at large. The emphasis, however, is to fit new data into old protocols rather than the other way around.

“Nobody wants to perform the procedures,” Tretter said, and he believes this is true throughout the nation. “No one wants to take measures to mitigate the situation. It’s not enjoyable. It’s not a pleasurable experience. However, transmission is the one thing that prevents us from having a season. As a result, I believe you realize that we must take the appropriate measures to halt transmission. I’d rather wear a mask than go without salary for six weeks.

“So, I believe everyone should realize that we never simply introduce procedures for the sake of adding them. We have a team of specialists advising us on the best strategies for getting through a full season. That involves keeping as many people healthy as possible, as well as playing all of the games and paying everyone. Taking shortcuts to make procedures simpler but lowering your chances of being paid is usually not worth it.”

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

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