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Jamie Collins Is Ready for All Challenges

Opting out was never a viable option for veteran linebacker Jamie Collins

Veteran linebacker Jamie Collins is ready to get his first season in Detroit started. 

He understands that the coronavirus pandemic presents a tough situation for himself and his teammates, but he's ready for whatever challenges get thrown his way this upcoming campaign. 

And for him, opting out was never a viable option. 

"For me, it's just, you know, just deal with it," Collins said during a Zoom video conference with Detroit media Thursday. "I'm at home every day, bored, eating, getting big. You know, whatever the situation is. You know, it's just like I don't want to drown in my sorrows or just be depressed. So, I just felt like this would be the time for me, especially with me coming into a new situation, to just get in here and do what I got to do and deal with it." 

The opting-out deadline for players from all 32 NFL franchises was Thursday at 4 p.m. EST. 

The Lions had three players opt out prior to the deadline: defensive tackle John Atkins, wide receiver Geronimo Allison and offensive lineman Russell Bodine. 

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None of them were expected to be significant contributors to the 2020 team. 

Collins briefly talked to members of his family before making his decision not to opt out. 

"They always want what's best for me," Collins commented. "They always want me to make my own decision, my own choice. They always treated me like that, brought me up (like that). I was raised like that to make my own decision. So, yeah, they always just, they on my side." 

And when guys do test positive for the virus, Collins believes that you just have to "pray for" and "hope for the best." 

"(It's) the next man up mentality," he said. "That's always been the mantra -- the next man up." 

Collins will take the field for the first time as a member of the Lions on Sept. 13 against the Chicago Bears.