CLEVELAND (WJW)– Cleveland Browns center JC Tretter was elected president of the NFL Players Association before the start of the coronavirus pandemic. But he said he doesn’t regret the decision to run.
The added responsibilities aren’t a concern for the eight-year veteran. Tretter said he enjoys the work and he’s passionate about it. After all, he studied labor relations at Cornell University.
“My main goal is protecting the players. And when you take on this role, your job is to protect all the players in this league,” he told reporters during a Zoom call on Wednesday.
Tretter, who is expecting a baby with his wife, said he consulted with medical experts and is staying at a hotel until he feels comfortable returning to his home. While he will not be opting out for the 2020 season, he wanted to make sure players had the option and time to think about it.
“I think everyone should at least think about it,” Tretter said. “I think everybody should take the time to think through and make the best decisions for themselves.”
The return to the Browns training facility in Berea last came with NFL-wide protocols, including daily COVID-19 testing for the first two weeks. After that, testing will go to every other day, based on the positivity rates on a team-by-team basis.
The Browns center would like to see the daily testing continue in order to make the best decisions moving forward. With a close eye on other professional sports leagues, he said testing lag time hurt Major League Baseball’s return.
“When someone is sick and shedding virus, it sweeps through the building quite quickly,” Tretter said of the outbreaks seen in the MLB.
He said the NFL’s protocols are working so far, but they are not set in stone. Like most aspects with this virus, they will continue to change as we learn more and as the CDC recommendations evolve.
Throughout the season, Tretter sees a need for conversations with players about shared responsibility and making good decisions off the field.
“Guys don’t want to get sick and guys don’t want their families getting sick,” he said. “You have to accept what other people are doing outside the facility because that affects your risk as well.”
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