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Falcons cut two unvaccinated players to get to 100 percent

Mike Florio and Chris Simms congratulate the Atlanta Falcons for becoming the first NFL team to have every player vaccinated.

Before Monday, several NFL teams hovered in the vicinity of 100 percent vaccination rate. The Falcons got there first.

It didn’t happen because they convinced their lingering holdouts to get the vaccine. Per a league source, the Falcons made it to full vaccination among all players by cutting their two unvaccinated players.

Other teams in the vicinity of 100 percent could have done the same thing, but those teams have unvaccinated players who are regarded as too valuable to the broader mission of winning as many games as possible.

It had been believed that most if not all players firmly in the bottom rungs of the roster would get vaccinated in order to enhance their chances of making it to the 53-man roster or the 16-man practice squad. Not so for the two players whom the Falcons released.

Those players, if they remain unvaccinated, likely won’t get other chances. Given the 2021 protocols, unvaccinated players must wait five days before trying out or signing. Vaccinated players can do either, immediately. Which means that, for the players among the first five out as teams dropped from 90 to 85, unvaccinated players likely will be out of luck.