The NFL wants there to be football in 2020 and Cleveland Browns center J.C. Tretter, the NFLPA president, is hopeful that could happen
The NFL is facing some uncertain times, as is the rest of the world due to the uncertainty around COVID-19. For the Cleveland Browns, they have one player who is monitoring the situation very closely.
Center J.C. Tretter is the president of the NFLPA and he recently took some time to discuss the upcoming season as well as the “long list of hurdles” that they have to overcome to be able to play the game. He says he understands that the contact sport makes things more difficult but is doing all he can to make sure the players and their families remain safe.
The league already proved earlier that they will put safety first as they called off their 2020 NFL Draft event in Las Vegas and held a virtual draft instead. Now, they are trying to ensure safety again, which has to be a huge challenge for them.
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Cleveland Browns News
"“There’s a long list of hurdles we have to get over and things we have to watch and check,” Tretter said on a Zoom call with reporters, when asked about what needs to happen for players to feel comfortable returning to the practice field. “We just continually seek out information to be informed. This virus is constantly changing and the information you’re getting is constantly changing. So we’ve stayed really up-to-date with everything and made sure we’re always looking through the lens of how we keep players safe, as well as their families.”"
This is a huge task for the league as they are facing something we have never seen before. And with no other major American sports starting, they could become pioneers in this endeavor. We all want football to be back, but safety is No. 1 here and it does seem like the league is planning for the best while preparing for the unknown.
"“The odds squarely peg the Browns to remain in third place in the AFC North, hammered behind the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers. At BetMGM the Browns are +500 to capture the division title, behind reigning champs Baltimore (-200) and Pittsburgh (+350).”"
Cleveland has a much-improved team but the Steelers and Ravens are more proven — especially with Ben Roethlisberger back for Pittsburgh. The Browns can finish ahead of them, but they have to prove themselves for oddsmakers to fully buy in.
"“Playing three NFC North teams, they’re teams that are really well-coached,” Stefanski said in a news release. “I’m looking forward to the competition and looking forward to that piece of it. The preseason is such a huge part of our development, of our evaluation of our players when the young guys can get put under the lights. We’re excited about those four games in the preseason.”"
The league is hopeful these games will be played and they’re setting schedules as if they are. Cleveland is following in that as they are selling tickets to their preseason games now.
The Browns have added some talent to the offensive line with Jedrick Wills in the draft and Jack Conklin in free agency, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be room for more depth. That’s where undrafted free agent Alex Taylor comes in.