Hall of Fame wide receiver Michael Irvin is not happy with his old team.
The Cowboys have not reached the 85 percent COVID-19 vaccine threshold ahead of training camp, meaning the team will not be granted relaxed health and safety measures.
“It should upset them,” Irvin told ESPN. “Dude, you’re not thinking right. You’re not thinking right. Whatever you got, I don’t give a damn. Nothing else can be more important.”
But the 55-year-old had a unique reason as to why the team should get vaccinated: winning.
“Nothing else is more important,” he said. “And not being one of the [teams to reach 85%] says there’s other things to a great number of people on this team that are more important than winning championships, and that makes me worried.”
Irvin, who won three Super Bowls with the Cowboys in 1992, 1993 and 1995, thinks that every choice players make should be made with a championship in mind. Getting a vaccine is no exception.
“Call me stupid because I try to take any little thing and turn it if you are a championship team,” Irvin said. “Any little thing because a championship team, it’s not something that you can walk by. It’s not candy that you pick up out of the bowl. It’s something that has to be ingrained. Every decision has to be made like you are winning championships.
“If you’re not one of the [vaccinated] teams are you really thinking about winning a championship?”
The Fort Lauderdale native says he would back up his words with action. If Irvin – whose comments were directly in regards to the Cowboys but is the same no matter the team – was in the locker room and a teammate would not get vaccinated, he would fight them.
“If I’m on a team in this situation I’m going to make sure to ask, ‘You get vaccinated? You get vaccinated?’” Irvin said. “Somebody in that damn locker room needs to say, ‘Hey man, we’re going to have a chance, are you vaccinated? Let’s go through this because this could be two weeks, a healthy dude missing games. In this league that could be it for you. The person misses two weeks, and that’s it. You’re [butt] is out. I’ll fight a [expletive].”
Unvaccinated players cannot leave the team hotel and will need to wear masks and remain six feet away from people inside team facilities. However, vaccinated players do not have to wear masks. They can also eat meals with other vaccinated players and work out in the weight room with no restrictions.
Of the 31 NFL franchises, 13 teams have reached the 85 percent threshold, according to reports. The Cowboys will test unvaccinated players daily and vaccinated players weekly, sending samples to a lab in Oxnard, Calif.
In Mike McCarthy’s first season as coach, the Cowboys disappointed with a 6-10 record. Dak Prescott suffered a major injury and the defense was one of the worst units in NFL history.