National Football League

NFL Stars Say #WeWantToPlay

July 19

Several NFL stars took to Twitter on Sunday morning to voice their concerns regarding the league's plan to safely return to play this fall. The messages came after the NFL sent an email to its teams on Saturday outlining the dates that players will be required to report to training camp.

Using the hashtag #WeWantToPlay, players implored the league to establish guidelines on how to open training camps safely amid the coronavirus pandemic, including arguably the league's brightest star, Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes.

On July 7, President of the Players Association JC Tretter released a statement expressing the players' concerns regarding training camp and the upcoming season.

A little over a week later, several high-profile players joined a conference call with the NFLPA to discuss the upcoming season and address player health and safety, according to ESPN's Jeff Darlington.

Following the call, players and the NFLPA have been working closely to create a unified message.

Requests from the NFLPA include daily testing, no preseason games, and a "ramp up" period (21 days of strength and conditioning, 10 days of non-padded practices, and 14 days of "contact acclimation") after they report to camp.

Regardless, without addressing the players' specific requests, the NFL said Saturday that rookies will be required to report on Tuesday, quarterbacks and injuried players on Thursday, and all other players next Tuesday.

Mahomes and Tretter were not the only influential voices to speak out.

Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt outlined the measures he wants enacted in order to feel safe stepping on the field.

New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees is concerned that if the correct protocols are not put in place, the 2020 season could be in jeopardy.

And Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson cited the health of his pregnant wife as his chief concern heading into training camp.

Several other stars weighed in as well:

Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins

Kansas City Chiefs S Tyrann Mathieu

Cleveland Browns DE Myles Garrett

San Francisco 49ers CB Richard Sherman

 

Buffalo Bills WR Stefon Diggs

And on Sunday, Tretter once again addressed the situation.

According to reports, the NFLPA did not instruct players to voice their greviences on Twitter, but the union was involved in making sure the tweets were factual.

The NFLPA hopes to continue meetings with the league in order to iron out the details of the league's plans for practices, testing, opt-out clauses and other factors that are of concern to players.

This is a developing story.


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