Proposal for player opt-outs for the season included in NFL-NFLPA negotiations
Although the league is doing what it can to make final preparations for the 2020 NFL season, players have expressed the prospect of sitting out due to the risks involved with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Fortunately, it seems they may be given the choice regarding whether or not they want to play.
According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the latest proposal between the NFL and the Player’s Association will allow players to opt out with written notice by August 1:
Another key piece of the NFL’s proposal: Any player may opt out of the 2020 season with written notice by Aug. 1.
The NFL does not appear to have any restrictions about which players can choose to play out the season. Those with with pre-existing conditions, have family members with pre-existing conditions, or players that have just straight up concerns about playing during the ongoing pandemic are allowed to opt out as long as they notify their teams by the scheduled time.
Some players have expressed their concern with the overall lack of safety protocols up to this point while others are confident that the league will figure out a solution. Meanwhile, it remains to be seen what kind of financial repercussions they will face if they choose to stay home.
With training camp kicking off in the coming weeks, the hard deadline will give teams some time to find potential replacement players by the time the regular season rolls around. It will be interesting to see just how many players opt out once the circumstances of their pay is revealed.