For Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, protecting himself and his family is his number one priority. Speaking to the media on Monday, the new father revealed he decided to take the COVID-19 vaccine to preserve the well-being of his daughter Sterling Skye, who was born February 20.
“To me it was more of a personal decision, with having a baby girl and knowing that I was going to be around people,” the 25-year-old said. “I wanted to make sure I could do whatever I could to help keep her healthy.”
Emphasizing that individuals are free to make their own decision, the 2018 NFL MVP added that he wasn’t influenced by outside voices.
“I mean, whatever you believe, I think you can do whatever that is,” he continued, “and we’ll figure out the best way to keep each other healthy by social distancing and doing whatever it is, whenever we can in this building.”
“I’ve had to learn a lot there, probably more than I’ve learned in my entire life until now, of how to raise a little baby girl and try to give her the best opportunity and the best life possible.”
During his time on the podium, Chiefs head coach Andy Reid confirmed that he along with 18 other team members had received at least one dose of the vaccine, with others expected to get vaccinated throughout the week.
“I think the more we can push towards that, I think that’s a positive,” he said. “I don’t want anybody to get sick, and I surely don’t want anybody to pass away, so I think in certain situations a vaccine becomes important.”
The NFL Sent Out a Memo About the Vaccine Last Week
In a memo obtained by NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the league told franchises on Tuesday their Tier 1 and 2 status employees (excluding players) “should be expected to be vaccinated unless they have a bona fide medical or religious ground for not doing so.”
Here’s the full NFL memo, which also says teams must report weekly the number of employees who are vaccinated, as conversations with the NFLPA continue on the thresholds at which protocols on testing, PPE, travel, etc., can be relaxed. pic.twitter.com/FXuIhFP6Vh
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) April 13, 2021
“We are actively discussing with the NFLPA a set of protocol changes that would apply to clubs where vaccination levels reach a certain threshold and would give vaccinated individuals significant relief from requirements relating to testing, PPE use, physical distancing, travel and other subjects,” closing statements of the notice read. “Similar protocol changes have been adopted in other sports leagues and the prospect of relaxing COVID protocols in the NFL should help encourage players and staff to be vaccinated.”
Commissioner Roger Goodell: Expect Full Stadiums for 2021 Season
Albeit some rescheduled games and team-wide outbreaks at times, the NFL not only started the 2020 season on time, but also finished with an on-time Super Bowl and select teams were able to host fans at a limited capacity in their stadiums.
Goodell says today’s virtual league meeting included discussions about welcoming back fans at every stadium. They had 1.2 million fans – safely, he notes — in 2020. Now, in 2021, the plan is all stadiums full. A strikingly optimistic tone five months away from kickoff.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 30, 2021
Heading into the 2021 season, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell confirmed on March 30 that he intends for all stadiums to host fans at full capacity, signaling a huge decision that could help recuperate lost profits from the previous campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With about four months until the official start of the season, it’s an optimistic goal, but something definitely worth keeping an eye on if you’re itching to see the Chiefs live once again at Arrowhead Stadium or on the road.
READ MORE: Former Chiefs QB Alex Smith Announces Retirement With Emotional Video