Reports: NFL drops daily COVID testing of unvaccinated players

Field Level Media

January 22, 2022 at 1:47 am.

The National Football League will halt daily COVID testing of unvaccinated players for the remainder of this season, according to multiple reports.

The change in testing policy affects roughly a dozen players, the NFL Network reported. That’s the number of unvaccinated players on playoff teams who have not been diagnosed with COVID.

The eight teams remaining in the playoffs were informed of the new policy via memo, the reports said. The league and NFLPA, the players’ union, agreed on the move to stop daily testing.

In the last several days, both the NBA and NHL have announced daily testing of asymptomatic players for COVID will stop. The NBA halted daily testing Jan. 15. The NHL said daily testing will cease after its All-Star game in early February.

The NFL cited fewer recent cases of the Omicron variant as one reason for the policy change, as well as the fact the five-day return rule for players who tested positive has worked well.

Players who show symptoms of being sick will still be tested for COVID, the reports said. This includes players who are on a 90-day “holiday” from testing after having gotten COVID but have symptoms.

But players showing no signs of COVID, even though unvaccinated, will no longer be tested.