The NFL teams have started their training camps and are preparing for the upcoming 2020 season. There is no preseason after the league and NFLPA agreed to cancel the exhibition games, but wide receiver Odell Beckham has called for more drastic measures. The Cleveland Browns player said that the NFL should cancel the season.
Speaking with Lane Florsheim of the Wall Street Journal, Beckham explained that he doesn't believe the NFL season should necessarily take place. He said that it's not entirely safe due to the COVID-19 pandemic and that the owners shouldn't push for the games to take place. "Obviously, with everything that's going on, it doesn't make sense why we're trying to do this," Beckham stated. He continued and alleged that the owners are merely trying to make money without thinking about the players.
"It's obviously for their money," he continued. "And that bothers me because there's always been this — and I hate saying it like that — but the owners' [attitude is], 'Oh we own you guys,' and just kind of that unfairness going on that they don't see us as human." Beckham also explained that he is prepared for the season not to happen.
While the three-time Pro Bowler did state the NFL should cancel the season, he has no plans on joining other players in opting out. Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com reported on Monday afternoon that this interview with the Wall Street Journal actually took place two weeks ago. In the time since, Beckham has seen the safety procedures at the team facility and developed a comfort level. He reported to training camp on time and took part in testing.
While Beckham will seemingly take part in the 2020 season with his teammates in Cleveland, several other NFL players will not participate. Many stars have opted out ahead of training camp due to concern for the health of their loved ones or to provide assistance in their communities. This batch of players includes a half-dozen members of the New England Patriots, a starting guard for the Kansas City Chiefs and a Super Bowl hero.
Chiefs running back Damien Williams is one of the biggest names to opt-out of the season after he scored two touchdowns during Super Bowl LIV. The veteran informed the team of his decision, which then released a statement. The Chiefs explained that the organization supports Williams, knowing that he made a choice "in the best interest of his family."