Josh Allen is undecided on whether to take the COVID-19 vaccine, and the stance has landed the Buffalo Bills quarterback in some hot water.
Allen was asked about the vaccine during an appearance on “10 Questions With Kyle Brandt.” The Pro Bowl quarterback said he had not made up his mind on whether to get vaccinated, leading to some backlash online and assurances from public health experts that it is fully safe.
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Allen Speaks Out
Allen said during the segment that he has not gotten one of the more than 160 million doses doled out in the United States so far, prompting Brandt to ask if he planned on getting vaccinated.
“I don’t know. I’m still debating that,” Allen replied, via WGRZ.
The Bills quarterback went on to say that he would look at the issue with an open mind and do whatever was best for him.
“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 said. “Again I’d lean the other way too if that’s what it said.”
Allen said he was taking precautions in his own life, mostly staying in and around close family and always wearing a mask when he goes out in public. The Bills quarterback appeared to support the league’s decision to leave the decision up to players, saying “everybody should have that choice to do it or not to do it.”
Allen Comes Under Fire
The stance did not go over well with everyone. Many called out Allen, saying he was casting doubt on a vaccine that they believed to be fully safe. Others said he could have taken the opportunity to show leadership and encourage people to take the vaccine.
Many Bills fans stepped in to defend Allen, saying he is entitled to his opinion and pointing out that he was not speaking out against the vaccine in any way.
A Buffalo-area medical expert even offered to personally assuage Allen’s fears about the vaccine. Dr. Thomas Russo, an infectious disease expert and professor at the University of Buffalo’s Jacobs School of Medicine, told WGRZ that there have been no major concerns yet among the hundreds of millions of shots administered in the United States.
“Hundreds of millions of doses have been given with these vaccines and the safety signal looks extraordinary,” he said. “There’s almost nobody that has a medical issue that would preclude them from getting vaccinated. If Josh Allen has any concerns or questions about this vaccine I’d be glad to volunteer to answer those questions for him.”
Though the Bills were largely able to avoid major COVID-19 outbreaks during the season, they were still affected by the pandemic in other ways. Games against the Tennessee Titans and Kansas City Chiefs were moved due to outbreaks on other teams, and fans were not able to fill the seats at Bills Stadium until the playoffs, when the state allowed a little more than 6,000 to watch wins over the Indianapolis Colts and Baltimore Ravens.