Isaiah McKenzie posts letter from NFL fining him $14,650 for not wearing mask

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Players who aren’t vaccinated must adhere to the same COVID protocols that applied in 2020. And the NFL isn’t messing around when it comes to imposing fines when lapses occur.

The league, we’re told, already has fined a number of unvaccinated players for not wearing a mask. Another one has been fined this morning. Bills receiver Isaiah McKenzie shared on social media the letter he received today, requiring him to pay $14,650 for recent infractions.

The league moved quickly; the behavior triggering the fine happened on Wednesday.

“On August 25, 2021, at approximately 2:15 p.m. while walking through the indoor fieldhouse and into the training room, you failed to wear a mask,” the letter from the league office posted by McKenzie explains. “Then at approximately 4:35 p.m. on August 25, for several minutes, you again failed to wear a mask in the meeting area of the weight room while gathered near other players after the offensive meeting.”

The letter posted by McKenzie confirms he’s one of various Bills who aren’t vaccinated. That confirmation isn’t necessary; only players who aren’t vaccinated are subject to fines for not wearing a mask.

McKenzie’s tweet mocks the outcome, asking his followers to “pray for me” with a smiling emoji after it. Someone definitely should be praying for him, because he’s clearly at risk of being cut next week.

McKenzie arguably lands at No. 6 on the receiver depth chart, behind Stefon Diggs, Emmanuel Sanders, Cole Beasley, Gabriel Davis, and Jake Kumerow. If other players lower than McKenzie are vaccinated, the Bills will be very tempted to keep one of them instead when the roster drops from 80 to 53 in five days.

McKenzie could be saved by his value as a return specialist; he’s currently the No. 1 option for kickoffs and punts. (Last year, he returned two kickoffs for 32 total yards and one punt, which resulted in an 84-yard touchdown.)

McKenzie received a $137,500 signing bonus on the one-year deal he signed to stay with Buffalo. A portion of his $990,000 salary is guaranteed. That may not be enough to guarantee a roster spot, however. Between not being vaccinated and not complying with the rules, McKenzie is tempting fate as the Bills undoubtedly look to increase their vaccination rate by shedding some of the players who persist in their refusal to do what they should have done weeks ago.

37 responses to “Isaiah McKenzie posts letter from NFL fining him $14,650 for not wearing mask

  1. Nobody likes being told what to do, but rules are rules and his employer made it perfectly clear what he can and can’t do. He got what he deserved.

    And he is a good player – but easily replaceable. I think people need to understand that unless they are at the top of their profession they are easily replaceable if they don’t want to follow the rules that their employer has set to create a safe workplace. A “safe workplace” lowers insurance premiums for the company (this is why pre-employment drug screens exist…supposedly), so when you start messing with people’s money lines will be drawn.

  2. Bro I know the virus and the vaccine and the mask mandates is all rubbish but getting vaccinated would make your life a lot easier.

  3. The Bills have a ton of talent. Will their lack of brains come back to affect their season? Whether you care about getting the vaccines or not(for my personal life, I don’t care if you are or not, tho I am fully vaxxed), not being vaxxed will affect teams this season. No getting around it.

  4. Its about the team now. if you want to stand out as an individual do it away from work.

  5. The NFL can’t mandate vaccinations but they can sure make it miserable for the ignorant and conspiracy lovers.

  6. So go ahead and blow year salary on fines for your “freedom”. I wonder what you’ll be saying in ten years when that $14k might come in handy.

  7. Yikes! Big Brother is watching.and $14,650? How are the amounts of these fines decided? Is it a percentage of a player’s salary or is it an arbitrary number picked by the league office? What happens with that money? Hope it all goes towards a worthy cause like St. Judes hospital, and not used to beef up administration’s salaries.

  8. Cut his ass. If you’re not smart enough to take the carrot (keeping your lucrative job by doing the bare minimum your employer asks of you while being considerate of the health and safety of the broader community), you gets the stick (a boot to the backside).

  9. With that attitude, this guy is a serious liability to the Bills. He’ll be quarantined or testing positive and costing the team at some point during the season. If they’re smart, they will cut ties with this knucklehead. And Beasley.

  10. They should come down heavy handed on the players with fines, Then offer to give all their money back if they get vaccinated.

  11. Horrible leadership. This team will win nothing. They think they arrived. It’s hilarious.

  12. He posted the letter online???

    “Hey! Look at me! I’m stupid!! Dumb as a rock! Look at me!
    Isn’t it cool how stupid I am?”

  13. Devil’s Advocate says:
    August 26, 2021 at 10:16 am
    Yikes! Big Brother is watching.and $14,650? How are the amounts of these fines decided? Is it a percentage of a player’s salary or is it an arbitrary number picked by the league office? What happens with that money? Hope it all goes towards a worthy cause like St. Judes hospital, and not used to beef up administration’s salaries.
    ————————————————————

    I agree that the money should go to St. Jude’s.

  14. Cost of COVID vaccine: $0

    Fine for being unvaccinated and not wearing a mask: $14,650

    Being an idiot: Priceless

  15. No other business would an employee be fined for not wearing a mask for a few minutes throughout the course of the day.

  16. 60 years ago it was “Ask what you can do for your country.”
    Today? Me, me, me. My, my, my.

  17. If the AFC Championship is Lamar Jackson vs. Josh Allen, the NFL will have a vaccination PR problem.

  18. mnrasslinggovjesse says:
    60 years ago it was “Ask what you can do for your country.”
    Today? Me, me, me. My, my, my.
    ==

    Exactly right.
    If the ’70s were known as the “Me Decade,” this has be the “Me, Myself and I Decade.”

  19. Still somewhat surprising how much some people are willing to risk to avoid the shot. The league should just for this year create one additional team just for unvaccinated players and coaches.

  20. Isiah, There was a rule and a defined punishment.

    You knew both and broke it anyway.

    Entitled you wants to whine about it.

    Order of blame:

    Yourself

    … Large gap…

    Your players association

    … Large gap…

    The NFL.

  21. I hate that my companies dress code doesn’t allow me to wear open toed sandals.

    I can comply or quit. Simple as that.

  22. minime says:
    No Fun League.
    ==

    The NFL doesn’t exist so its employees can have fun. It’s a $10 billion-a-year industry that cares only about protecting its business interests — as well it should.

  23. I strongly support the right of every Buffalo Bill to choose ignorance over self-interest.

  24. So does NFL have video cams all over the training facilities, and these are monitored every day by the NFL, and by people who can recognize all the bit players out of uniform? Not objecting to that, but just curious. Or would that have been reported by the team?

  25. Here’s a list from the Mayo Clinic for proper mask use…let be honest a small percentage of the population (maybe healthcare workers) abide by them…no way an uuvaxed guy that could lose a mid 6 figure job is following them.

    – Wash or sanitize your hands before and after putting on your mask.
    – Place your mask over your mouth and nose and chin.
    – Tie it behind your head or use ear loops. Make sure it’s snug.
    – Don’t touch your mask while wearing it.
    – If you accidentally touch your mask, wash or sanitize your hands.
    – If your mask becomes wet or dirty, switch to a clean one. Put the used mask in a sealable bag until you can get rid of it or wash it.
    – Remove the mask by untying it or lifting off the ear loops without touching the front of the mask or your face.
    – Wash your hands immediately after removing your mask.
    – Regularly wash cloth masks in the washing machine or by hand.

  26. We’ve coddled these players for so long now that they’ve forgotten what a privilege it is to play in the NFL. They need a reminder.

  27. buffalo69 says:
    August 26, 2021 at 10:40 am
    No other business would an employee be fined for not wearing a mask for a few minutes throughout the course of the day.

    ~~~

    Right? A lot of companies would just fire you after giving you a written warning. Luckily for this clown, his union negotiated a fine for being a dumbass.

  28. I like how when McKenzie says, “pray for me”, Florio says someone should because he’s in danger of being cut because he’s not vaccinated. Not that he’s in danger of being sick or dying. Just in danger of being punished because he’s not following the virtually useless rules regarding covid. It’s all about compliance. Have no illusions about that.

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