NFL union president Tretter offers suggestions for 2021
(AP Photo/David Richard, File)NFL Players Association President JC Tretter is calling for the significant reductions in offseason work forced by the pandemic to continue in future years. “The COVID CBA forced significant changes, and it has shown us another way players and teams can successfully prepare for and play in the NFL,” Tretter wrote. We had no offseason practices, fewer training camp practices and no preseason games. The argument in favor of these offseason practices is based on the assumption that players need reps during OTAs to develop and learn while teams need the practices to (jell). “And I think you’ll see more of that, which I think will be productive.”___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
NFL won't be cutting in line for coronavirus vaccine
(AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)The NFL won’t be cutting in line to get the coronavirus vaccine. “No one should be thinking about the vaccine going anywhere other than our first responders and the most vulnerable people right now,” said DeMaurice Smith, executive director of the NFL Players Association. “The rollout of the vaccine is going to be driven by public health concerns and what medical and government officials determine to be the most efficacious for risk reduction across society as a whole. The largest vaccination campaign in U.S. history got underway Monday with health workers rolling up their sleeves for the first shots on the same day the nation’s COVID-19 death toll hit a staggering 300,000. High-risk health care workers and some nursing home residents were among the first in line for the shots that could finally conquer the outbreak that has upended life across the globe.
NFL union sees no current need for bubble to slow COVID-19
“When we all follow the protocols, they work and they work well,” Tretter said. “The contact tracing, getting everyone who potentially are exposed out of the building, works to stop the spread of the virus. Union spokesman George Atallah said that 90% of players that test positive do so within five days of exposure. That is why the league and union have decided to isolate “high-risk” close contacts for a five-day period to make sure they continue to test negative. “We have to make decisions on the information and data we have at the time.”___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
From season-altering to bizarre, injuries hit NFL yet again
From the season-altering (Dak Prescott, Barkley) to the bizarre (Tyrod Taylor, Trent Brown), injuries are playing their traditionally significant role in the NFL. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)ARLINGTON, Texas – From the season-altering to the bizarre, injuries are playing their traditionally significant role in the NFL. Brown also recently went back on the COVID-19 list, a newcomer among potential ailments with the NFL playing during a pandemic. Few teams have had the volume of injuries that have hit defending NFC champion San Francisco. New Orleans' star receiver, Michael Thomas, has had a tumultuous season in part because of ankle and hamstring injuries.
Hospitals feel squeeze as coronavirus spikes in Midwest
Like other states, health officials in Wisconsin had warned since the pandemic began that COVID-19 patients could overwhelm hospitals. Nearly 678 COVID-19 infections per 100,000 people have been diagnosed over the past two weeks, leading the country for new cases per capita, according to the COVID Tracking Project. The space isn't exclusively for coronavirus patients but could be used to treat them if needed. Last week, the state had the nation’s sixth-highest rate of coronavirus infections per 100,000 people, according to a White House coronavirus task force report dated Sunday. The number of reported coronavirus cases in Oklahoma increased by 980 on Wednesday, with 13 additional deaths, state health officials said.
NFLPA asking teams to change all fields to natural grass
The NFL Players Association president cited the league’s official injury reports from 2012-2018 to state his case that natural grass fields provide a much lower risk for injuries, compared to artificial surfaces, during practices and games. “Anecdotally, I know how my body responds playing on turf versus grass,” said Tretter, who graduated from Cornell University. Seventeen NFL teams play their home games on grass, while 15 franchises do so on artificial turf. In his new role, Tretter says lobbying for grass fields will be a key talking point in any labor negotiations with the league. “If we know grass is significantly more safe than synthetic turf, it’s about continuing to push forward and making it a priority,” Tretter said.
Browns tackle Conklin not starting against Bengals
CLEVELAND – Backup right tackle Chris Hubbard will start over injured Jack Conklin for the Cleveland Browns when they host the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday night. Conklin, who was the Browns' biggest signing in free agency this winter, injured his ankle and a finger in last week's season-opening, 38-6 loss at Baltimore. He's active to face the Bengals, but the Browns announced before the game that Chris Hubbard is starting. Cleveland starting center JC Tretter (knee) and rookie left tackle Jedrick Wills (knee) are both playing. Starting cornerback Greedy Williams (shoulder) will miss his second straight game andThe Bengals are missing defensive tackles Geno Atkins (shoulder) and Mike Daniels (groin).
On edge: Browns' Garrett returns after NFL suspension
The Cleveland Browns' star defensive end can't undo his helmet-swinging attack on Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph last season or the six-game NFL suspension that ensued. The Browns, led by rookie coach Kevin Stefanski, open their season at Baltimore against defending league MVP Lamar Jackson and the Ravens. Garrett has claimed Rudolph used a racial slur to provoke him, a charge the QB has strongly denied. In the aftermath of his actions, Garrett was banned indefinitely and the Browns' defense struggled mightily without him. Through his behavior, Garrett let the Browns down, and the incident with Rudolph scarred the No.
Camp injuries, virus protocols had some NFL teams scrambling
I think theres a lot of teams in the league right now that are dealing with all kinds of injuries.He's right. Teams all over the league were sent scrambling during camp. Certainly not during training camp when players are going hard to make the roster as the start of the regular season rolls closer. It's the soft tissue injuries and those things that you are trying to prevent with the ramp-up period," Bitonio said. That will certainly be something to monitor as the regular season begins and teams deal with injuries and potential replacements.
The Latest: Lions activate Golladay from COVID-19 list
The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___The Detroit Lions have activated wide receiver Kenny Golladay from the reserve/COVID-19 list. The list was created for players who either test positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact with an infected person. ___Louisville has paused workouts for mens and womens soccer, field hockey and volleyball after 29 members of those programs tested positive for COVID-19. Team members who have not tested positive or been identified through contract tracing may be permitted to return to on-campus workouts on Aug. 10. He is the second Browns guard to opt out, following Drew Forbes.
Players plead with NFL to address health, safety concerns
NFL players are publicly pleading with the league to address several health and safety concerns on the eve of training camp. The league informed teams on Saturday that training camps will open on time even though discussions with the players union regarding testing for the coronavirus and other health and safety protocols are ongoing. Players for all teams are scheduled to report by July 28. If the NFL doesnt do their part to keep players healthy there is no football in 2020. @NFL Training camp is about to start.. And theres still No Clear Plan on Player Health & Family Safety.
NFLPA wants players tested daily for virus when camps open
(AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth, File)The NFL Players Association wants players tested daily for coronavirus, one of the outstanding points in discussions with the NFL over health and safety protocols as the start of training camp draws near. They gave their medical opinion it was safe to open training camp, and thats where we are, Smith said. If the league and union fail to reach an agreement, the NFL can implement its proposed rules, according to the CBA. The NFLPA could file a grievance to argue the league isnt providing a safe work environment under rules of the collective bargaining agreement. This isnt a normal year so weve always done it this way is not going to work this year, Tretter said.
NFL players raise concerns on playing, others ignore advice
NFLPA president JC Tretter warned players they have to "fight for necessary COVID-19 protections" and Malcolm Jenkins said "football is nonessential." (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, FIle)Some NFL players are raising concerns about playing football amid the coronavirus pandemic while others are ignoring advice of medical experts by working out with teammates. NFL players are humans some with immuno-compromised family members or live-in elderly parents. But as a union, our most important job is keep our players safe and alive. It is the responsibility of the employer to provide a safe work environment, Tretter told NFL players.
Goodell: 'Tragic events' call for 'urgent need for action'
NEW YORK NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says there remains an urgent need for action following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and the protests around the country that have followed. As current events dramatically underscore, there remains much more to do as a country and as a league, Goodell said in his statement Saturday. There remains an urgent need for action. I understand the outrage because it seems the list continues to grow: Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd. Will he be treated like George Floyd or Ahmaud Abrey?
NFLPA pres Tretter says "hurdles" remain before NFL's return
CLEVELAND Browns center JC Tretter is cautiously optimistic the NFL season at least some version of it will take place in 2020. This is a contact disease, and we play a contact sport, Tretter said during a Zoom video conference. Although he's a relative rookie when it comes to football diplomacy, Tretter gave several noncommittal answers Tuesday like a seasoned politician. For players to feel confident outside their homes, Tretter said they'll need guarantees that every precaution has been taken to minimize the chance of infection. The way this thing passes along is through contact, and thats what we do for a living, he said.