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DeAndre Hopkins tweets, deletes contemplation of retirement over COVID vaccine

The NFL’s effort to get players to get vaccinated is having the desire effect. Sort of.

Incentives and disincentives (like the possibility of non-vaccinated players causing a forfeiture) have the broader goal of getting players to choose to get vaccinated. It’s causing some players to consider getting out of the game.

Cardinals receiver DeAndre Hopkins tweeted, then deleted, this message: “Never thought I would say this, but being put in a position to hurt my team because I don’t want to partake in the vaccine is making me question my future in the NFL.”

It costs Hopkins nothing to question it. If he ultimately retires, however, he’d owe the Cardinals $22 million in unearned signing bonus money. Maybe that’s why he deleted the tweet.

Regardless, it will be interesting to see whether any players actually quit the game over a reluctance to get vaccinated and the increasing pressure the NFL is placing on players to choose to get the shot(s). If they do, however, others will happily take their place. Even with increasing pressure to be vaccinated, the supply of willing NFL players will continue to far outweigh the demand.