By Michael Hurley, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — The NFL may be convinced that it has most everything figured out with regarding to opening up training camps during the coronavirus pandemic, but NFL players remain a bit skeptical.
Take Friday, for instance. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport stated that “almost everything is done” with regard to the NFL starting up later this month. In the same message, Rapoport reported that the NFL hasn’t finalized plans on COVID-19 testing for players, that the NFL hasn’t been able to determine if there will be any preseason, and that the NFL hasn’t figured out the way it will pay players to play football.
Other than that, everything is “done.” Just some minor details.
Glad to see the NFL has "almost everything done." NFL stays crushing the coronavirus. Proud of them. pic.twitter.com/oLY6xRaMe1
— Michael Hurley (@michaelFhurley) July 10, 2020
Anyway, the league and the union — as they so often are — remain worlds apart on how they see this situation unfolding. And one star player is outright begging an even bigger star to speak up on the behalf of players.
In a tweet on Thursday night, Browns receiver Jarvis Landry pleaded with Tom Brady to join the NFLPA’s calls with the league.
“The leagues needs your voice right now,” Landry said to Brady. “We need our Leaders on these calls with the NFL. Ask you as a fellow athlete, as a brother, as one of the most respected players of All-Time… We Need To Hear You”
@TomBrady The leagues needs your voice right now.. We need our Leaders on these calls with the NFL. Ask you as a fellow athlete, as a brother, as one of the most respected players of All-Time… We Need To Hear You #Salute✊🏾 #Unity
— Jarvis Juice Landry (@God_Son80) July 10, 2020
A fan pushed back against Landry, arguing that not all players are feeling the same way at this moment and thus might not be so willing to fight for a cause that doesn’t particularly interest them.
“This game has [an effect] on us are not just one select group of people or team. It’s not about calling Tom Brady out, but our union needs guys of his stature to be a part of these conversations just as they are apart of the games that you love to watch on Sunday,” Landry said.
Whether Brady actually becomes a leader in this particular issue remains uncertain, though there is precedent. Brady lent his name to an antitrust lawsuit filed against the NFL back in 2011. Brady’s generally remained on the sidelines when it comes to taking a stand of any kind in a public forum, though he has notably taken some baby steps with regard to using his voice and his reach in recent months.
Players like Landry clearly want to see that effort continue as everybody tries to figure out just how to play football during the COVID-19 era.