Buffalo Bills wide receiver Cole Beasley is not backing down from his controversial comments on the COVID-19 vaccine.
Beasley stirred controversy and became a trending topic on Twitter after sharing his very strong stance on getting vaccinated. This week, after some time to cool off, Beasley said he stands by everything he said.
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Beasley Speaks Out
In a long post on Twitter last week, Beasley shared that he would not be getting vaccinated and didn’t believe others should pressure him into it.
“I will be outside doing what I do,” Beasley wrote, via CNN. “I’ll be out in the public. If your scared of me then steer clear, or get vaccinated. Point. Blank. Period. I may die of covid, but I’d rather die actually living.”
As CNN’s report noted, Beasley’s tweet came just after the league announced that a number of restrictions would be lifted for players who had been vaccinated, but those who were not vaccinated would continue with regular testing and requirement to wear face coverings in team facilities and during travel.
Beasley said that no matter what, he wouldn’t be forced into taking a vaccine he didn’t feel safe taking.
“If I’m forced into retirement, so be it,” he wrote.
The statements sparked a strong backlash, but Beasley said this week that he stands by everything he wrote — though said he’s done talking about it so the team can focus on the upcoming season.
“I don’t want to be any more of a distraction to my team so that’s where I’m leaving it. Something needed to be said, so I said it. I don’t regret any of it,” Beasley told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “That’s how I feel.”
Bills Steering Clear of Topic
While Beasley may be very outspoken about his thoughts on the COVID-19 vaccine, other members of the team have tried to avoid the topic. Earlier this year, quarterback Josh Allen said that he was still collecting information about the vaccine and stressed that it should be up to every player to decide for themselves.
“I don’t know. I’m still debating that,” Allen said when asked if he had gotten the vaccine yet, via WGRZ.
“I’m a big statistics and logical guy. So if the statistics show it’s the right thing for me to do, I’d do it,” Allen added. “Again I’d lean the other way too if that’s what it said.”
But head coach Sean McDermott has made it clear that he wants as many players vaccinated as possible, which he said would give the team a competitive advantage. During the team’s minicamp earlier in June, McDermott said that he felt the team was moving in the right direction but there was more work to be done.
“I would like to see our team move in that direction. Continue to move and increase the number of people that are getting vaccinated. Certainly respect everyone’s position, that being said,” McDermott said, via a video that the team shared on Twitter.