Al Woods opted out of the 2020 season early Friday morning. The former defensive tackle for the Seattle Seahawks has joined a list that approaches something resembling a trend.
DL Al Woods opts out of 2020 season.— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) July 31, 2020
Statement from Al Woods ⤵ pic.twitter.com/x3gpR4RyXb
Of the first couple dozen players to opt out of the upcoming season, a surprising number of them have been defensive linemen.
Or perhaps, it’s not such a surprise after all.
The average weight of the 24 players that have chosen to opt out so far (high risk or voluntary) is 277 lbs. More of the group weigh over 300 lbs (14/24) than under 250 (8/24)— Brad Spielberger (@PFF_Brad) July 29, 2020
Don't think it's a coincidence, these bigger guys are probably smart to be careful
Because of the nature of the NFL trenches, these athletes - though extraordinarily fit - have a BMI that is far above average. Al Woods is currently listed at 309 lbs.
His departure now certainly takes the sting out of his departure earlier, as Woods played admirably last season and left the team for a contract ($2.25 million / $400k guaranteed) that Seattle could have reasonably matched.
Incidentally, this is a position of need for the Seahawks as they head into the season relying entirely on Jarran Reed and Poona Ford.
We don’t know if Seattle has been the team making the calls to either Mike Daniels or Damon Harrison. However, both Daniels and “Snacks” Harrison have been speculated as targets by multiple outlets this offseason.
It is a very real and dangerous road that these athletes walk as they face this decision. BMI and weight in general are real considerations, as doctors have claimed that a “BMI of 30 increases a person’s risk of developing a severe case of COVID-19 by 27%, and a BMI of 40 doubles a person’s risk”. The CDC also lists it as one of the seven deadliest factors to complicate COVID-19.
Defensive tackle remains what will likely be the Seahawks biggest position of need heading into the season, unless you’re also of the camp that they could use about three more linebackers to really shore up Pete Carroll’s philosophy. It will be very interesting as the league approaches the anticipated August 8th deadline how the free agent DTs handle the situation.
How would you like to see Seattle handle the line this year?
What to do with the Defensive Line?
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Make Clowney do it