The Indianapolis Colts were dealt a major blow to their team depth right before their Week 1 game against the Seattle Seahawks, as quarterback Carson Wentz, Pro Bowl center Ryan Kelly, and wide receiver Zach Pascal all were placed on the COVID-19 reserve list.
Wentz, Kelly, and Pascal will be forced to enter five-day quarantines after being deemed a close contact to a staff member who tested positive. Given that these are the protocols for unvaccinated players, that hints that Wentz, who called his vaccination status a “personal decision” earlier in the offseason, did not get the shot.
There’s plenty of frustration to go around, especially because Indianapolis’ status as one of the least vaccinated teams in the league could potentially impact the win-loss column. Indianapolis Star columnist Gregg Doyel, who is no fan of Wentz, took this as a chance to once again rail on his ability to command respect in the locker room.
Not only did Doyel (subscription required) go in on Wentz for not being a leader and for not getting vaccinated, but he said Wentz was “not alone” in the Colts’ locker room.
This Indianapolis Star columnist is no fan of Colts QB Carson Wentz.
Given how easy it is to get vaccinated, how it’s proven to reduce the risk of becoming symptomatic, and how vaccinated players do not have to subject themselves to the same health and safety protocols as unvaccinated players, it’s fair to say that not getting vaccinated puts the Colts at a competitive disadvantage.
While Wentz might be able to garner the admiration of players around him and perform well on the field, can you really say he’s doing everything to help his team out if he puts himself at risk to miss time with a COVID diagnosis?
Doyel may have been a bit bombastic in how he delivered that message, but it’s fair to question why Wentz and the others who aren’t vaccinated continue to hold steadfast in their opposing view.
While Wentz, Kelly, and Pascal could return before the Seattle game, that doesn’t mean the Colts are in the clear, especially if they still have a low vaccination rate.
While we wish anyone who may have tested positive a speedy recovery, this does go to underscore how important getting vaccinated is. It’s a public health issue devoid of “politics” or “personal freedoms.”
With Wentz and other key contributors liable to miss time due to this, not getting vaccinated could be a major anchor on the quarterback’s comeback 2021 season.