By DaVince “Dino” Wright
While the Dallas Cowboys are gearing up for the 2020 season. Three key players are sitting out for several reasons. The pandemic has changed daily lives in America and has changed the landscape of sports. In this article, I will share who’s sitting out and what it means for that key position with missing players going into the season.
Players That Opted Out
Veteran Full Back Jamize Olawale has opted out this season. Olawale has started at full back for the Cowboys for the past 2 years. If you are familiar with the game plan of new head coach Mike McCarthy while in Green Bay, he used the full back in key red zone plays. Coach McCarthy relied on John Kuhn to do the dirty work in Green Bay, so the full back position is very important. Earlier this year the Cowboys picked up his option (contract) to keep in with the team. “The key to opting out of the season is guaranteed money”. “Players are not taking a hit, they will just sit at home and get paid for not performing this year”, Todd Archer of ESPN said. The Cowboys currently do not have a veteran replacement for Olawale on the current staff. Cornerback Maurice Canady is the only defensive player that has opted out and that’ where the team is really thin at that position. Wide Receiver Stephen Guidry is sitting out, but the team is pretty stacked at wide out especially with Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and CeeDee Lamb receiving top billing at that spot.
Do NFL Players Get Paid to Opt Out
Here’s the nuts and bolts of it. NFL players considered high risk can earn $350,000 and an accrued NFL season if they choose to opt out. That’s a little more than the base salary for a unsigned free agent. There also will be a fund established to pay back any benefits eliminated as a result of COVID-19 up to 2023, as well as to pay back any lost guaranteed money to players.
How Long Do Players Have to Opt Out?
On July 24th, the league and the NFL Players Association approved this plan to open training camps as scheduled and cancel this year’s pre-season games. Under this plan, players have seven days after the agreement is signed to decided if they want to opt out of the season due COVID-19 concerns.
I’m looking at this two ways. First, if I were a player not making top tier money at my position, I would sit out and collect money while taking care of my family. On the hand, I would play because its my job and you’re always playing for a bigger contract for the team your with. This is the year that Dallas gets over the hump and all players need to be in camp and gearing up for the season.
By DaVince “Dino” Wright