Washington coach Ron Rivera has been one of the most outspoken supporters of the COVID-19 vaccine and has not shied away from encouraging his players to go get vaccinated. During an interview this week he took it one step farther and said people spreading “a bunch of misinformation” were are “f—ing a–holes.”
Rivera, who is immunocompromised following his battle with cancer, told Sports Illustrated in an article published Monday that he blames the hesitancy to get vaccinated on misinformation which is too easily accessible with today’s technology.
“Gen Z is relying on this,” Rivera said, referring to a cellphone. “And you got some, quite frankly, “f—ing a—holes, that are putting a bunch of misinformation out there, leading people to die.”
He continued: “That’s frustrating to me, that these people are allowed to have a platform. And then, one specific news agency, every time they have someone on, I’m not a doctor, but the vaccines don’t work. Or, I’m not an epidemiologist, but vaccines are going to give you a third nipple and make you sterile. Come on. That, to me, that should not be allowed.”
Rivera said his condition forces him to be extra cautious despite having been fully vaccinated back in February.
“We’ve had a couple situations with players already testing positive for COVID, and that scares the hell out of me, because I interact with these guys. I’m close to these guys, and sometimes I forget to put my mask on for extra insurance. I know I’m vaccinated, and I know it’s going to keep me from getting deathly ill, but I can still get it. And who knows? So I have to be careful.”
He continued: “There’s enough positive science out there, if they’re going to tell me that over 600,000 people have died and 99.9% are people that were not vaccinated, well, what about the .1%? Well, that .1% are people that had underlying conditions — old age, something else. It’s not young, healthy people. So I don’t know why. And then they talk about all this distrust, well, if half the world wants it and can’t get it, what’s the problem with us? It frustrates me.”
Vaccination rate among Washington team players jumped to 84% of them having at least one shot, ESPN reported earlier this month. The NFL Network reported on July 27 that 85% of players in the league have received at least one shot and that 14 clubs now have a vaccination rate of over 90%.