Just one day before two teams are having rookies report for camp, some NFL players are not confident the season will happen at all.
Trey Wingo of ESPN shared that he texted with “several prominent NFL players” Sunday. In those messages, they shared a pessimistic view that there will be a 2020 NFL season.
Wingo correctly notes that this could be construed as posturing. However, as he noted the players are not happy that their concerns about health and safety amid the COVID-19 pandemic are not being heard by the league.
NFL players coordinated to blast league over coronavirus concerns
These concerns were voiced in a major way on Sunday when, starting with Houston Texans star J.J. Watt, tweets started pouring in with the hashtag #WeWantToPlay.
It was a tremendous, coordinated effort that was likely put together by the NFLPA and included all the biggest names in football. Russell Wilson, Drew Brees, Richard Sherman, and just about every other major star you can think of shared their messages on Twitter.
The common theme was that the NFL is not prioritizing their health and safety.
Could the NFL players strike if their demands are not met?
Many players included a not-so-veiled threat in their tweets Sunday. As demonstrated here by Indianapolis Colts star defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, there may not be a season if the NFL doesn’t meet the players’ demands.
There has been some talk that players could strike without having their demands met. The NFLPA absolutely does not want it to come to that, but reports indicate there are at least some prominent players who have threatened to make that move.
The biggest keys right now, aside from the glaring financial component, is that players want daily testing, a three-week period to ramp up before helmets and pads are even on their bodies, and no preseason games. The NFL, to this point, has not been willing to meet those demands.