Unvaccinated Carson Wentz says the league’s protocol “keeps me up at night”

Indianapolis Colts Training Camp
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Despite the lack of transparency when it comes to which players are and aren’t vaccinated, circumstances will sometimes reveal the truth. For Colts quarterback Carson Wentz, the truth — thanks to a five-day absence after being deemed a close contact with someone who tested positive — is that he’s not vaccinated.

Meeting with reporters on Thursday, Wentz took various questions regarding the vaccination issue. He used the phrase “trust me” on numerous occasions; an ironic crutch because, frankly, it’s impossible to trust an unvaccinated quarterback to be available for any and every game of the coming season.

“Trust me, it is a personal decision,” Wentz said as to his decision to not be vaccinated. “I’m not going to go in depth on why, but I will say it’s a personal decision for me and my family. And I respect everybody else’s decision and I just ask that everybody does the same for me. I know that’s not the world we live in. Not everyone is going to equally view things the same, but yeah no one really knows what’s going in someone else’s household and how things are being handled so, it’s a personal decision. That’s where I’m at on it, and with the protocols and everything the way they are, it’s really for us it’s all about understanding them clearly and making sure we are dotting our i;s, crossing our t’s, all those things so that we can avoid what happened this week with a couple of us.”

Wentz was asked whether his five-day close-contact absence has changed his thinking.

“Trust me,” he said. “Trust me, I’ve weighed a lot of things and I’ve factored in everything. And I know what’s at stake. I know all those things. And like I said, it’s just where I’m at, where I’m at with my family, and that’s why just understanding the protocol, to truly try everything we can to avoid what happened this week. It is what it is. You know, whether we agree or not with the protocol and the rules, they’re in place, so we’ve gotta honor them as best as we can so we can avoid what happened.”

He didn’t rule out changing his position. Until he does, however, he’ll continue to be at risk for another five-day absence or, if he tests positive, a minimum absence of 10 days.

“Yeah, this has been a fluid process for me this whole time,” Wentz said. “And you know that’s kind of where, as a family, we’ve just been monitoring everything we can, letting it play out as long as we can, and this is where we’re at today. And things could change, you know, in the next coming weeks. So who knows? Who knows where this world’s going? Who knows where the protocol is going, if that’ll change. I’m not gonna act like I’m an expert on a vaccine or a virus or any of that, so that’s just where we’re at right now.”

Wentz has learned more and more about the protocol as time has passed, with his recent absence being the most stark lesson.

“Trust me, there’s — it’s been an ongoing process for me, for my family, and so it’s — this happening this week, it kind of woke us up on really the protocol and just understanding how this happens and just understanding some of the gray areas with the league and making sure we know what’s at stake and how to avoid it,” Wentz said. “But yes, like I just mentioned, it is a fluid process and I’m weighing every pro and con out there. And it keeps me up at night. There’s a lot of things that go on inside my head, but it’s where we’re at right now.”

He said that coach Frank Reich and G.M. Chris Ballard have not pushed him and other unvaccinated players to get vaccinated. “They tell us the facts, they tell us their opinion, but there’s no pressure,” Wentz said. “There’s no — but it’s said in the right way. Because we know what’s at stake. We know as a team where we want to go, and we know some of these things can hinder if we let them. That’s why we’ve got to do everything we can to not let it be a distraction and to be on top of it with the protocol and everything.”

He knows, given the protocol, he could easily miss a game over not being vaccinated.

“Trust me, it would be unfortunate,” Wentz said. “And so it’s something that, it’s unfortunate that that’s kind of where we’re at, but I get it. There’s rules and protocols and like I said earlier, whether we agree or not, I’m fortunate enough to do this and I’m employed by the NFL. So at the end of the day, we’ve gotta honor what they say, and so let’s hope that doesn’t happen. And we’ll use this hopefully as a lesson learned to avoid everything we can, and you know try and be out there and be available every weekend.”

The issue obviously will be a distraction for teams with unvaccinated players. That’s still not enough to convince Wentz and his unvaccinated teammates to relent.

“I think with this pandemic, even going back to last year, there’s a lot of unknown,” Wentz said, “and like I said, I’m not going to act like an expert in it, but there’s a lot of unknown that I think everyone handles it differently but being here, within the NFL, with the protocol and trying to be available like I just said, yeah, you definitely — you do want to go above and beyond and make sure you’re smart with what you do not only in this building, but outside this building. And just understanding. Both to be available but also from our health standpoint everyone, you know, has a different approach and opinion on their health with this matter. So there’s a lot of things that unfortunately are taking our attention away from football so we try and keep it as much as we can about football here and just make sure we’re on top of those things in and out of the building, just so we can be available and be healthy.”

So what lesson did Wentz ultimately learn from his five days at home?

“I learned it can be tough to avoid some close contacts, and just really trying to further understand and you know push the league to just make it clear to us, which has been you know addressed, just so it’s clear to us how we can avoid those situations,” he said. “And you know I could dive into the details but I don’t need to. I don’t think anybody made any big mistakes. It was just kind of the way it unfolded, and so we learned from it, and we’ll do everything we can to avoid it going forward.”

If they can’t, the Colts could have Wentz and/or other key players absent for one or more games. In the NFL, where one game can be the difference between 10-7 and 11-6, that one game could be enough to pull the plug on a playoff appearance and a potential Super Bowl run.

Regardless of the broader societal health benefits of players like Wentz getting vaccinated (along with the important message it sends to his fans), that’s what makes this anything but a “personal decision.” It’s a conscious and deliberate choice to assume a significant risk that he may not be available to play for reasons unrelated to his foot or any other injury. He’s risking that he won’t be available for one or more games. His absence from one or more games could turn a Colts victory into a Colts defeat. And that one extra defeat could keep the Colts home for the postseason.

Ultimately, Wentz’s personal decision means he can’t personally be trusted to play every week in 2021.

Trust me.

108 responses to “Unvaccinated Carson Wentz says the league’s protocol “keeps me up at night”

  1. You can take the guy from North Dakota, but you can’t take the North Dakota out of the guy. And you can’t put the vaccine, or trust in him.

  2. In Ryan Tannehill back from his vaccinated COVID banishment? Been 7 days.

    The punishment between vaccinated and unvaccinated protocols is getting slimmer.

  3. He and his wife might think differently in a few weeks if he has to miss a game check or two for Covid protocol. 2/17 of your annual income adds up.

  4. For a guy that is as delicate as Wentz is emotionally and physically, he sure is a lot of trouble. Not sure he is worth the headache. As a fan of another AFC team that will be vying for a wild card spot, the Colts impending implosion is something I’m looking forward to.

  5. For a guy who’s crux has been being available to play, you’d think this would be a slam dunk

  6. Wentz has everything to lose and nothing to gain by not getting a shot that takes 2 seconds. He needs to prove to the league he’s a viable player and he’s not going to do it sitting out because of no vaccine. Your life in so many ways is easier just getting a simple shot like you did when you were like 5 years old.

  7. Carson hasn’t learned anything from what happened last year in Philly. His use of trust me is ironic since the Colts can’t trust him to be available week to week.

  8. It’s fine. Nick Foles will come to the rescue last minute and win a super bowl for the Colts and never look back.

  9. The guy is not too bright. “Not going to get into it, personal decision” because I don’t want everyone to think less of me than they already do.

  10. When the Colts have a game on the line that will determine if they make the playoffs or not and this young man has to miss it because of something that is now out of his control, reality will set it. He has the ability to control it now, do it.

  11. The rampant anti-science bias in this country is beyond ignorant. Refusing to take a fully FDA approved vaccine while being paid millions and risking not being available to play will have him losing the locker room and the fans pretty quick..

  12. He’s not going to play all 17 games, with or without the vaccine, the injury bug will get him, TRUST ME….

  13. When the Colts have a game on the line that will determine if they make the playoffs or not and this young man has to miss it because of something that is now out of his control,


    Wentz missing the game will give the Colts a much higher chance of winning the game

  14. People like Carson Wentz keep me up at night. The fight is not over. One out of five people that are afflicted have been vaccinated. That’s not an indictment against the vaccine. It’s testimony to how virulent the Delta variant is. Keep pressing.

  15. Wentz is a loser, I’m glad he’s gone from Philly. Vaccinations shouldn’t be a political issue, nor should the NFL perpetuate it.

  16. This is a guy who folded tent with a 100m contract because the Eagles drafted a QB. Trust me, I don’t think so!

  17. I am not surprised Wentz is scared of a tiny needle. Watch him in the pocket. He is scared of everything.

  18. Meanwhile, how many concussions, broken bones, torn ligaments, and subsequent medications have you received in the past few years? Trust me, your logic is dumbfounding to even an Eagles fan.

  19. I underwrite life insurance for a living. Covid has obviously had a large impact on our industry with all of the unnecessary deaths. It saddens me when I read medical records and see all the ‘wake up’ calls so many unvaccinated people who get Covid have.

    Even though the survival rate is so high for healthy people, many of them have long-term complications with heart enlargement and ongoing respiratory issues. We won’t know the full impact for many years to come.

    Get the vaccine folks. Trust me.

  20. What about the 700,000 who will never get up again Wentz, Cousins, Newton, Allen, etc.?

    The virus spreads because — not despite, BECAUSE — a huge number of numbskulls think they are not as susceptible to dying from the virus as others. If they get it, they will survive it.

    That may be true. But I wonder if they would throw lit matches in a dry forest because they know they won’t get burned to death?

    Actions have consequences. Anti-vaxxers will be remembered as some of the most selfish and culpable humans during this plague.

  21. “Even the “vaccinated” test positive.”

    Yes and those in seatbelts still get in car accidents. Take your chances. I’ll take the vaccine and wear the seatbelt. Odds are in my favor in both cases.

  22. On the answer to your question/statement Carson no I do not trust you. Just like I don’t think your logic makes any sense. So no just like if a lunatic is at the wheel and says trust me we’ll be fine no I’m sorry I dont trust you to make everything end up fine. If I was a teammate of his and had any bonuses tied up with a playoff appearance I’d be pissed my QB1 can disappear VERY easily, especially as things get colder and people are indoors together more often. IND is the easiest bet to come in under prognostications because they have zero certainty week to week if he will be playing. Or not.

  23. Bill Belichick gets it!

    Vaccine or not really not the issue.
    Please read his comment from earlier today:

    “We have other players on the team who are not vaccinated, as I would say probably every other team in the league. And we’ve had minimal, but throughout the league there’ve been a number of, quite a high number I would say, of players who have had the virus who have been vaccinated. So your implication that the vaccination solves every problem, I would say that has not been substantiated, based on what has transpired in training camp this year. That’s all.”

  24. The way he handled himself in Philly, and now this. No surprise he collapsed. If he was a star player I could see the team taking the risk. The way he’s played the last few years…

  25. This presser clarified at least two things: (1) Wentz really is a me-first and not a team-first guy; and (2) the rumor that player family members are huge influencers on the vaccine choice is accurate.

  26. Wentz will be scared for the next 2-3 years, assuming he lasts that long in the league. Covid protocols are here to stay in the NFL for a few years thanks to all the unvaccinated people.

  27. He’s trying to hang onto whatever ego he has left….Kind of hurts when Foles will be in Philly lore forever and you’re just a footnote.

  28. Him and Cousins…this is just a visible symptom of why they can’t get it done…anti-leaders…..

  29. It is not a personal deision if he can infect other people simply by breathing out. It is not a personal decision if he can infect a child and the child’s family because children cannot yet get vaccinated.

  30. I will never trust anybody who says it’s a personal decision. We live in a society when it comes to infectious diseases your decisions have an impact on other people. Why is this such a hard concept to understand?

  31. Eagles fans are glad that this selfish emotional train wreck doofus is another team’s problem. Trust me.

  32. That’s a lot of hiding behind “family” as a reason. Look, I suppose it’s possible to not get vaccinated because of family reasons, but most people I know are taking family into account as a reason TO get vaccinated. His family is none of my business, but it’s perplexing. There might be a family member with a health condition (though it’s rare) that makes the risk outweigh the rewards, but I don’t see what that has to do with a 28 year-old man getting the vaccine or not. Getting the vaccine isn’t going to hurt your family. My son is not vaccinated, and that’s his choice alone. However, he is considering it because he is concerned for the health of his grandfather and an elderly friend with many health conditions. He hasn’t been vaccinated but he’s been keeping his distance and following other measures. He might get the first shot this weekend; he knows what his “family” thinks.

  33. IF having a great sense of smell was critical to playing football, every player would already be vaccinated and QBs would be at the head of the line.

  34. “I don’t trust the vaccine, but I’ll take horse dewormer because a chiropractor on the Internet told me too”..

  35. Obviously this is just another example of why his teammates in Philly didn’t respect Wentz , his lack of leadership . By the way it’s common knowledge people who frequently say trust me are the ones you shouldn’t . I’m sure just like in Philly there’s a lot of eye rolling and head shaking when his teammates are discussing Wentz .

  36. C Wince, I’ll try to go easy because you helped in getting the trophy,but get off the flat earth nonsense. Football is your decision,but your right to be Typhoid Mary is wrong. What about your family,friends, community, you can’t bring that home to them. Where is your respect for others if you are a vector for debilitating disease or possible death? WWJD ?

  37. This from a guy how just had surgery & apparently had no problem with relying on medical advise. Did he look into what was in the anesthesia he was given before the surgery? Are there any other meds he takes? Ibuprofen?

    How about food? Has he looked at the ingredients in the foods he eats or does he only eat home grown veggies & raise his own cows? Does he eat any GMO-foods?

    Get out of here.

  38. If he refuses to protect himself and his family from this nasty variant, it should be the high probability of getting this virus keeping him up at night. I just saw up close what it does to unvaccinated people. It may not kill you but you want no part of this thing. My business partner has been dealing with lasting effects for weeks now. He still labors for breath when talking. He totally regrets being against the vaccine.

  39. Players who are not dedicated to winning act like Wentz it’s a shame i had such high hopes for him when he entered the league from NDS .
    He is paid so much money to do the right things 100 times more then most of us make and he asks for trust and respect ?
    Next year i’d draft a vaccinated rookie QB in the 1st round cut this loser and just move on .

  40. trust me, this guy is selfish and doesn’t care about his family or his team. If he did he would try and protect them by getting vaccinated.

    let me guess, he is going to stock up on horse dewormed?

  41. Wait!! I am confused. Doesn’t “my body, my choice” apply here…..as it does for other things?

  42. Carson Translation = even though I have access to the best doctors advice in the country, butttttt my wife read this article from a disproven quack she found from a Facebook link and TRUST ME y’all, if you knew what I knew…..

  43. How long until we see Carson at a school board meeting screaming about mask and underground pizza cults?

  44. His words and body language indicate the he is embarrassed by his own position on this, as he should be. Being afraid of something that has been given to hundreds of millions of people with an extremely, extremely low percentage of side effects is something he should be very embarrassed about.

  45. Politics aside his whole career seems to be a me first mentality. I mean there was a whole sports illustrated article about coaches having to be nice to Carson in Philly or else he’d throw a tantrum so why are we surprised about any of this and that’s before the one he had when the Eagles drafted a QB without his permission.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the actual reason he doesn’t want to get vaccinated is because someone told him to and he doesn’t want to be told what to do.

  46. Regardless who likes/dislikes or agrees/disagrees the league protocols make it so the its untenable to be in the league unvaccinated. Your team cant depend on you, you cant even depend on yourself to earn your pay on a given day. So of course that keeps him up at night. Because sooner or later its going to be that night shift security guard job keeping him up at night if he doesn’t get himself into a different set of protocols. His call from here.

  47. Getting a tattoo or not is a personal decision, but helping spread a viruis that is ravaging mankind by refusing to vaccinate is a public health decision.

  48. If only there were something he could do to fix the situation… Like something totally free that much of the rest of the world has already done.

  49. Trust me. Trust me. Trust me.
    What a narcissist who will never be a winner. He has all the tools but money, ego and sense of entitlement will always be in his teams way.

  50. There’s a very simple solution to all of his sleepless nights worrying about the COVID protocol.

  51. More than 5 billion vaccine doses have been administered worldwide. Just get the jab like everyone else has already done.

  52. This guy is so unlikeable. Thanks to unvaccinated geniuses like him, the virus continues to mutate, and we now have a variant – the MU variant – that can evade the vaccine. We will never get back to normal with such selfish behavior.

  53. The opioids you’ve no doubt taken to manage the pain from your injuries poses a far-greater risk to your health than the vaccine.

  54. What should keep you up at night is being a moron that doesn’t believe in science and modern medicine. Get the shot.

  55. digilat7 says:
    September 3, 2021 at 1:39 am
    Him and Cousins…this is just a visible symptom of why they can’t get it done…anti-leaders…..


    Absolutely nailed it!!!

  56. Not one player has died or become significantly ill from covid-19. There is a chance of dying from a reaction to the vaccine or having other health issues. What if a player dies from the vaccine?

  57. If non vaccinated people have to stay away from the team if they have been around a close contact then vaccinated players should also

  58. “It’s a personal decision!”

    So is learning the playbook. So is staying in shape in the offseason. As if it wasn’t enough to do the right thing, putting yourself into position to miss random games throughout the season is irresponsible.

  59. Cousins and Wentz are a special
    Kind of ignorant. Team leaders in name only. The fans will go wild if these clowns miss time due to covid.

  60. No one wants to hear the falling efficacy of the vaccines, no one wants to hear about the amount of breakthrough cases, no one wants to hear about potential side effects. This in itself is more scary than the pandemic. “Just take the vaccine and shut up or your stupid”. That is a scary argument.

  61. Wentz just can’t get out of his own way. Doesn’t get it. That’s why Philly chewed him up and spit him out.

  62. An unvaccinated, egotistical, always-injured, complete dunce (who is not surprisingly a complete turd of a human being) is now the “leader” of the Indianapolis Colts.

    Good luck with that.

  63. “I don’t trust the vaccine!”

    “Please admit me to the hospital for all possible modern medical treatment!”

  64. Carson,
    You’re young, fantastically healthy, can afford it all.
    Go out and catch the Fauchi flu like I did..I’m 65 healthy with great diet and exercise habits and no cormorbiditiies. ITWAS NO BIGGY.
    HCQ, Zinc, zpak, D, C. Knocked it out a week. Mild flu symptoms. My teens blew through it like a mild nothin burger without and therapeutics.( note to low information cultists: kids are nearly immune)
    I have 20 times the antibodies that the so called “vaccinated” have.
    You’ll be better protected by a mile than the Covidcultists and ready to play.
    Professional sports athletes are the best candidates to acquire the Cadillac of antibodies, GODS NATURAL IMMUNITY!
    (Instead of experimental gene therapy)
    There’s a reason guys like Carson have a 99.999 survival rate.

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