Dolphins Players Expressing Safety Concerns
We're now less than three weeks away until the start of training camp around the NFL, but there remain an awful lot of unanswered questions as to how best to protect the players in the midst of the global coronavirus pandemic.
And some Miami Dolphins players have taken to social media to voice their concerns about playing football under the current circumstances.
Interestingly, the comments are coming from the defensive backfield.
The first comment to appear this week was from cornerback Byron Jones, the free agent acquisition from the Dallas Cowboys, who commented on new NFLPA President J.C. Tretter's opinion column entitled, "Prioritizing Player Safety in an Pandemic."
"We want to play football. Work with us @NFL to make it happen safely, please," Jones tweeted.
Jones' former Dallas Cowboys teammate Kavon Frazier, who signed with the Dolphins as a free agent after the draft, chimed in later.
Also posting similar tweets this week were Dolphins cornerbacks Nik Needham and Ryan Lewis.
Like his teammates, Lewis made a direct plea to the league: "Dear
@NFL, please address the health and safety concerns so we can play football this year! I know everyone wants to see football this year, but we need the NFL to step up and create a safe work environment for us. #SafetyFirst"
There have been multiple reports of what kind of changes will take place in training camp this summer, though no formal announcements have been made.
Among the changes, the one that stands out is the reduction of the preseason from four to two games, though the NFLPA is said to be looking to eliminate the 2020 preseason altogether.
In addition, there has been talk of training camp rosters being cut from 90 to 80 or even 75 players, and it appears fans will not be allowed to attend any practices with the exception of two in-stadium events if a set of protocols can be followed (including no contact with players).
A report earlier this week indicated that the NFL wants to forbid any postgame interaction, including the popular jersey exchanges, both teams will have to travel to the stadium on game day by bus, and media will not be allowed in the locker room for postgame interviews.
Another game-day protocol will mandate the wearing of face masks on the sidelines for everyone other than players and coaches.