CHICAGO - A COVID-19 outbreak could cost NFL teams big this season.
The league just announced new, tougher COVID-19 protocols and penalties.
As the 2021 season nears, many people were hoping that football would return as we knew it pre-pandemic, but it doesn't appear that will be the case.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to all 32 teams Thursday saying that if a game cannot be rescheduled during the 18-week season due to a coronavirus outbreak among unvaccinated players, the team with the outbreak will forfeit the game and be credited with a loss.
"While there is no question that health conditions have improved from last year, we cannot be complacent or simply assume that we will be able to play without interruption," said Commissioner Goodell.
If that wasn't bad enough, players from both teams won't get paid that week.
"This is the biggest 'you are going to get vaccinated whether you like it or not' lay down by the NFL by far that they've done to this point," said Mark Carman of WGN Radio. "So they're basically trying to turn up the pressure from everybody in the NFL, who has been vaccinated to say 'look, I'm not going to lose money because you won't get the vaccine."