NFL players have the choice to opt out of the 2020 season, due to concerns over the coronavirus pandemic. On July 27, the Miami Marlins in Major League Baseball had an outbreak on their team, which could have caused some NFL players to think twice about whether they want to play this season.
The deadline for players to opt out has yet to be determined. That decision is final and they won’t be allowed to return. Players with preexisting conditions get a $350,000 stipend and those who opt out for other reasons receive $150,000.
Here is our running team-by-team list of which players have opted out of the 2020 NFL season:
Baltimore Ravens: Wide receiver and return specialist De'Anthony Thomas was put on the team’s reserve list as a voluntary opt-out. Thomas joined the Ravens last season after being with the Chiefs since 2014. Backup offensive tackle Andre Smith also opted out, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
Buffalo Bills: Nose tackle Star Lotulelei has opted out according to NFL Media’s Mike Garafolo. Lotulelei, the 14th pick of the 2014 by the Carolina Panthers, started all 32 games for the Bills the past two seasons. Lotulelei was diagnosed with a heart condition at the NFL scouting combine before he was drafted.
Chicago Bears: Eddie Goldman, a nose tackle and key piece of the Bears’ defense, opted out according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Goldman’s Pro Football Focus grade was the 17th best among all interior defenders over the past two seasons.
Denver Broncos: Ja’Wuan James, who was being counted on to start at offensive tackle, has chosen to sit out the 2020 season after he and his wife gave birth to a baby boy in May. Defensive tackle Kyle Peko will also not play this season, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
Detroit Lions: Wide receiver Geronimo Allison has reportedly opted out of the 2020 season, according to Adam Schefter. Allison signed with the Lions in the offseason after spending his first four seasons with the Green Bay Packers.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Defensive tackle Al Woods announced on July 31 that he is opting out of the season, citing “the health and safety of my family.” Woods, 33, vowed to return to the Jaguars in 2021. Linebacker Lerentee McCray announced on Aug. 1 that he too is opting out, citing the safety of his family.
Kansas City Chiefs: Guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif was the first NFL player to opt out of the season amid the coronavirus pandemic. Duvernay-Tardif’s decision wasn’t just notable because he’s a starter on the defending Super Bowl champions, but he’s also a doctor.
Minnesota Vikings: Defensive tackle Michael Pierce, who signed a three-year, $27 million deal this offseason and was the only free-agent addition of note for Minnesota, has opted out of the season according to NFL Network.
New England Patriots: The Patriots were hit hard early on, with multiple starters and key contributors opting out. Pro Bowl linebacker Dont’a Hightower and starting right tackle Marcus Cannon opted out, according to reports. As did running back Brandon Bolden, fullback Danny Vitale and offensive lineman Najee Toran. Safety Patrick Chung became the sixth Patriots player to opt out, according to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, and Reiss reported that wide receiver Marqise Lee would be the seventh player to opt out a few days later.
New Orleans Saints: Tight end Cole Wick opted out of the season according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Media. Wick played six games for the Lions in 2016 and eight games for the 49ers in 2018.
Saints TE Cole Wick chose to opt out for the season because of his asthma condition, I am told— Eric Edholm (@Eric_Edholm) July 28, 2020
(@TomPelissero reported Wick first)
New York Giants: Left tackle Nate Solder, who was set to make a $9.9 million salary in 2020, oped out. Solder survived testicular cancer in 2014 and his son has battled cancer too.
New York Jets: Four-time Pro Bowl linebacker C.J. Mosley is opting out because of family health concerns, according to multiple reports. Mosley has played two games for the Jets since signing an $85 million deal last offseason. Offensive lineman Leo Koloamatangi has also opted out according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Koloamatangi, a guard, was activated off the Jets’ practice squad to the active roster last November.
Philadelphia Eagles: Receiver Marquise Goodwin, acquired in a trade with the 49ers this offseason, will sit out this season via Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Goodwin and his wife had a daughter in February. The couple had two miscarriages since November of 2017.
Seattle Seahawks: Guard Chance Warmack, a 2013 first-round pick, opted out, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Media. The Seahawks signed Warmack in March.
Tennessee Titans: Undrafted rookie offensive lineman Anthony McKinney opted out according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Media. Undrafted rookies are not eligible for the $150,000 opt-out stipend.
Washington Football Team: Defensive end Caleb Brantley was granted a “high-risk” opt-out, a designation that allows him to collect a $350,000 stipend and an accrued season (players not granted the designation receive a $150,000 advance on their 2021 contracts and don’t accrue a season).
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