Could NFL players strike over coronavirus-related health and safety issues?

By Jesse Reed
Feb 1, 2020; Miami Gardens, Florida, USA; General overall view of NFL golden shield logo at the NFL Honors show at the Adrienne Arsht Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday, J.J. Watt, Drew Brees, Russell Wilson and many other top stars blasted the NFL over coronavirus-related health and safety concerns. With training camps set to open this week, there are still many more serious questions than answers. That has players extremely concerned about the viability of playing. Could this lead to a strike?

NFL players have threatened to strike if demands are not met

Reporting on a recent NFLPA call, Tony Pauline of Pro Football Network shared the following:

“Some players have talked about the potential of going on strike if their demands are not met or the league is not willing to meet them halfway. The NFLPA is against this strategy as the league could come back with a new agreement/CBA that’s much less advantageous to the players.”

Pauline also wrote, “Players are very frustrated they are not getting hard details from the league and they are hearing nothing new from the NFLPA.”

NFLPA may file grievance against the NFL over safety issues

For what it’s worth, the NFLPA issued a strong statement on Saturday after yet another call in which it stressed the health and safety of players is its highest priority.

At this time, players must report to training camp on time or face stiff fines. However, the NFLPA could be preparing to file a grievance if there is no deal struck ahead of Monday’s report date for rookies playing for the Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans.

Tom Pelissero of NFL Network shared a bit more on what is involved with all this.

Following Sunday’s blitz from the NFL’s top stars expressing their frustration that the league is missing the mark on health and safety, NFLPA president J.C. Tretter summed it all up on Twitter.

Nobody wants a strike. The players clearly are expressing their desire to play. But if the NFL does not make some drastic changes to the way it is approaching the coronavirus pandemic, that may not matter.