It’s the midpoint of July, which traditionally means that NFL teams across the league are reporting for training camp, and fans are getting excited for meaningless preseason games that somewhat resemble professional football. The uncertainty this season, however, surrounds the ongoing discussions regarding player safety and health in the midst of a deadly global pandemic for which the death toll has surpass a half million people.
As the NFLPA and the league work together to hammer out the details of how to go about making the 2020 season not only happen, but happen safely, here’s a look at some of the things that players have reportedly requested per Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.
As players negotiate w/ NFL, a few items players requested, per source:— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) July 14, 2020
-Opt-out clause: At-risk players receive salary if decide to sit.
-Opt-out: Players w/ at-risk families still get accrued season
-Stipend to players if show up to camp and everything shuts down ($250,000)
The first two items are interesting, simply for the fact that the subsequent question and debate then becomes what constitutes a player meriting an at-risk rating. Specifically, what conditions or issues are worthy of being declared at-risk, not just for players, but for families as well. Bruce Irvin of the Seattle Seahawks has already inquired publicly about the ability to opt out, while the Tampa Bay Buccaneers new quarterback, Tom Brady, has stated there is nothing to fear but fear itself (insert Florida Man joke here).
I mean, if I could earn several hundred thousand dollars while not working because I have an at-risk member of the family living at home, I’m calling up every relative I can find who is over sixty and has high blood pressure or heart disease and making them move in with me. Obviously, the attorneys are likely to set requirements about this, but that will be a different discussion for a different day for those attorneys.