Raiders Players Fined Collective $165K for Violating Coronavirus Rules During Charity Event
Ten players from the Las Vegas Raiders were fined by the NFL for coronavirus violations following a charity event that raised $300,000
Ten members of the Las Vegas Raiders recently learned the NFL isn't giving any leeway when it comes to coronavirus protocol violations — even if the rules are broken away from the field.
According to ESPN, the league fined the group of players this week after they were seen speaking to attendees without masks on during an event to raise money for young people battling addiction on Sept. 28 in Nevada.
Among the players who were fined $15,000, each, were quarterback Derek Carr, backup quarterback Nate Peterman and tight ends Jason Witten, Foster Moreau, and Derek Carrier, the outlet noted. Other players include cornerback Nevin Lawson, receivers Hunter Renfrow and Zay Jones, and practice-squad center Erik Magnuson.
Tight end Darren Waller — whose foundation hosted the event — received the largest punishment at $30,000, bringing the total up to $165,000 in fines. Despite the safety violations, the event raised nearly $300,000 for the Darren Waller Foundation, according to NFL.com.
"I know our players are going to handle that individually and I know they regret any harm they may have caused, and they're very sensitive about it and we'll handle it the right way," Raiders coach Jon Gruden told ESPN.
"I'm going to reiterate that I'm really proud of our players and our staff and the job that we've done battling this virus," Gruden added, "and it'll continue."
Earlier this season, Gruden was fined $100,000 when he didn't wear his face mask correctly while on the sidelines during a game against New Orleans. The club itself was docked $250,000 for the mishap, according to KSNV.
The NFL announced on Monday they would implement a video monitoring system and other checks to ensure protocols were being followed by teams, the New York Times reported.
“Protocol violations that result in virus spread requiring adjustments to the schedule or otherwise impacting other teams will result in additional financial and competitive discipline including the adjustment or loss of draft choices or even the forfeit of a game,” commissioner Roger Goodell said in a memo obtained by the Times.
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Among other protocols, the league is introducing a ban on gatherings outside of team facilities, limitations on tryouts per week, and a longer onboarding process for free agents looking to tryout.
The changes come after coronavirus cases spread through several teams. A New England Patriots player's diagnosis led to the team's game against the Kansas City Chiefs being pushed to the next day, ESPN reported.
Twenty players and staff from the Tennessee Titans also tested positive over the last two weeks, resulting in their matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers being postponed to later in the season.