Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports


Kyle Shanahan hoping 49ers’ COVID-19 vaccination numbers improve

Jun 15, 2021 at 2:05 PM--


The state of California lifted several of its COVID-19-related restrictions today. Masks are no longer required if you are vaccinated. The capacity limitations are gone, as are county tier updates, which provided information on exposure levels. Of course, businesses are still allowed to set their own guidelines. However, for the most part, the state is on a path back to normalcy.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has stated that he expects stadiums to be filled with fans during the upcoming season. As of last week, assistant coaches from at least four NFL teams refused to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Should that stand, it means they will lose their Tier 1 access, banning them from the football field, meetings rooms, and direct interactions with players.

The 49ers, however, have a 100 percent vaccination rate among their Tier 1 and Tier 2 staff. The rate among players is different, though, and head coach Kyle Shanahan hopes those numbers improve.

"I think we got 52 guys who have our vaccines done," Shanahan told reporters last week. "Our goal, I think, is to get -- we need 85-percent, which I don't have a calculator on me, but I think it's 77 or something of the 90 that we have. So I'm hopeful we'll get there. I think we will."

The NFL and NFL Players Association recently agreed that vaccinated players would no longer be as restricted as those who opt not to protect themselves from the COVID-19 virus. That 85 percent target that Shanahan hopes to hit means his team would be allowed to operate in a mask-less environment, closer to the pre-pandemic normal.

Reaching that goal by training camp at the end of July means 25 more players will need to receive their first shot of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine very soon. Several holdouts still have concerns about the vaccines, and the 49ers and the NFL are doing what they can to educate those individuals.

Obviously, there will be those who still opt to avoid vaccination due to medical or religious reasons.

"It's a different decision for everybody," Shanahan continued. "... I don't think it's the decision for people who have religious deals that don't allow them to do it, but everyone else does have the decision."

After dealing with the protocols last season and being forced to move team operations to Arizona for the final month of games, the coach is eager for things to return to normal.

"I'm just hoping that we do it because I don't want to have to wear my mask in here anymore," Shanahan added. "And I want to be able to have team meetings in our normal meeting room and be able to hang out with each other when we go on the road to hotels. So hopefully that'll work out."





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