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Rick Dennison is out. The Minnesota Vikings assistant coach has been released from his job after he refused to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. ESPN says Dennison is believed to be the first NFL position coach to part ways with a team after forgoing a vaccine.
Breaking: Rick Dennison is out as Vikings offensive line coach/run game coordinator after refusing the COVID-19 vaccine. MIN will promote assistant OL coach Phil Rauscher to replace Dennison, hired Auburn special teams analyst Ben Steele as an assistant. https://t.co/3oOgXHsaMr
— Courtney Cronin (@CourtneyRCronin) July 23, 2021
The NFL requires all Tier 1 staff — including coaches, front-office executives, equipment managers, and scouts — to receive the vaccine. While the vaccine is not required for players, unvaccinated players will face strict protocols during training camp and throughout the season.
Dennison’s departure comes days after the NFL announced that if it has to cancel a game this season because of an outbreak among unvaccinated players, that team will be forced to forfeit.
In May, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission updated its guidelines to state that U.S. employers could require workers who physically enter a workplace to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
The reaction from Dennison will set the pace moving forward, should other Tier 1 NFL staffers refuse the vaccine.
Not a positive story.
*This is a breaking news story. Check back to OutKick for updates.