Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold has come under fire for his comments on the COVID-19 vaccine.
Video — courtesy of ESPN’s David Newton — showed Darnold discussing whether he would get the vaccine. The fourth-year quarterback said he has not yet received the vaccination and is still “evaluating” whether, if it’s right for him, he will get it.
“You know, still got to think about all those certain things that go into it,” Darnold said. “Again, it’s everyone’s choice whether they want to get vaccinated or not. So that’s really all I got on it. I don’t want to go too into detail on it, but yeah I haven’t been vaccinated yet.”
Added Darnold: “There’s a ton of different things that go into it. I’m gonna evaluate that on my own and make the best decision that I feel is the best for myself.”
MORE: Washington’s Montez Sweat has confusing, contradictory response to COVID vaccine
Darnold is right in that it’s everyone’s personal choice on whether they want to get vaccinated. It’s also everyone’s choice to remind the first-year Carolina signal-caller that he once missed significant playing time from an infectious disease.
Who can forget that time in 2019, when Darnold missed three games due to mononucleosis? After all, it provided the internet with this gem of a GIF from the Jets, whom he quarterbacked at the time:
To be fair, Darnold isn’t the only player today who has become news for their opinion on the COVID-19 vaccine. Washington defender Montez Sweat put out a confusing, contradictory message after coach Ron Rivera — who is at greater risk should he contract the disease as a cancer survivor — brought in a vaccine expert to explain their benefits.
Regardless of his intent, Darnold got a quick reminder from Twitter about his own past with infectious diseases:
I was pretty worried about the ongoing pandemic situation until I learned Sam Darnold is evaluating it https://t.co/ghXIAfvcFT
— Jason Kirk, lifelong Tennessee Titans fan (@thejasonkirk) June 9, 2021
There’s literally a meme based on Sam Darnold missing a month’s worth of games because he got sick.
— Ben Axelrod (@BenAxelrod) June 9, 2021
Your. Choices. Affect. Others. You. Do. Not. Live. In. A. Vacuum. Like. The. One. Apparently. In. Sam. Darnold’s. Head.
Get vaccinated. Stop new and more potent variants from emerging. Maybe save someone else’s life. Like brews at Delta house, don’t cost nothing. https://t.co/1fppVpvgnr
— Luke DeCock (@LukeDeCock) June 9, 2021
I’ve seen Sam Darnold throw back across the field into traffic enough to know that decision-making isn’t his strong suit. https://t.co/pXEMjjZJoE
— Adam Fromal (@fromal09) June 9, 2021