Bills offensive lineman Jon Feliciano tweeted Tuesday that he ended up in the emergency room this weekend due to COVID-19.
Feliciano, 29, said he was vaccinated. It’s possible his teammates would have known he was in the ER Sunday morning while they were preparing to play the Carolina Panthers.
Feliciano, who opened the season as a starting guard, is one of six Bills players currently on the Reserve/COVID-19 list, including left tackle Dion Dawkins, defensive end A.J. Epenesa, linebacker Tyrel Dodson, practice squad offensive lineman Bobby Hart and practice squad defensive end Mike Love.
“It’s been a rough freaking season,” Feliciano tweeted Sunday. “But I’m built for it.”
The NFL, like much of the country, is seeing a sharp spike in cases recently, believed to be due to the rise of the highly transmissible Omicron variant. The league moved games this week because of COVID for the first time this season, putting a second game on Monday and two on Tuesday.
Feliciano is the second Bills player to reveal that a COVID infection landed him in the hospital this season. Dawkins was hospitalized for four days in the summer and said he experienced some of the worst symptoms of the virus (he recently tested positive for a second time). Tight end Tommy Sweeney missed last season after developing myocarditis following a COVID infection.
Feliciano shared his news in a tweet Tuesday, saying: “All u dummies that keep @ me about Covid, I’m VAXXED and ended up in er Sunday morning. U can still get Covid while vaxxed.” He added a reply to a fan: “Hey sheep I mean sal. The vax doesn’t stop you from getting Covid u big dummy.”
All u dummies that keep @ me about Covid, I’m VAXXED and ended up in er Sunday morning. U can still get Covid while vaxxed
— Jonathan Feliciano (@MongoFeliciano) December 21, 2021
No vaccine is 100% effective, and the possibility of breakthrough cases has been widely reported. But those who are vaccinated are significantly less likely experience symptoms from the virus, be hospitalized, or die. Those who have received a booster shot have even better immunity, CDC data show.
While Feliciano’s health is a much larger concern than his availability to the team, a return to the field does not appear imminent after a stint in the ER. With both Dawkins and Feliciano out Sunday, the Bills moved rookie Spencer Brown to left tackle and started Ike Boettger at left guard, Mitch Morse at center, Cody Ford at right guard and Daryl Williams at right tackle.