Patriots’ Jason McCourty questions whether or not NFL, NFLPA care about participant security

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England Patriots cornerback Jason McCourty questioned Saturday if COVID-19 protocols put into place by the NFL make gamers’ security a high precedence.

McCourty cited the Patriots’ journey to Kansas Metropolis on Monday as one instance, because it got here three days after quarterback Cam Newton had examined constructive. McCourty, 33, stated he was concerned in conversations over the past week with the NFL Gamers Affiliation, “making an attempt to determine who has our greatest curiosity in thoughts.”

“I feel exterior of right here, the individuals that do not have to stroll in our constructing – whether or not it’s the league workplace, whether or not it’s the NFLPA – they do not care,” McCourty stated. “For them, it’s not about our greatest curiosity, or our well being and security, it’s about, ‘What can we make protocol-wise that sounds good, seems to be good, and the way can we go on the market and play video games?’ I feel what I form of discovered personally all through this case is it’ll be as much as us as people on this constructing to simply actually care for each other.”

Head coach Invoice Belichick stated Saturday that it was his resolution to shut the workforce’s facility on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this previous week, after cornerback Stephon Gilmore had examined constructive on Tuesday. Gilmore, who had been a detailed contact of Newton, turned the third Patriots participant to be positioned on the COVID-19 reserve record, together with Newton and follow squad defensive deal with Invoice Murray.

The Patriots re-opened their facility Saturday and held their first follow of the week main into Monday’s residence recreation towards the Denver Broncos (ESPN, 5 p.m.). The Patriots-Broncos recreation had initially been scheduled for Sunday.

In the meantime, McCourty appeared perplexed that the NFL moved ahead with final week’s recreation towards the Chiefs on Oct. 5, highlighting how those that check constructive for COVID-19 usually do not accomplish that till a number of days after their preliminary publicity.

He stated that was a giant matter of dialogue amongst gamers after Newton’s constructive check on Oct. 2.

“When you get an opportunity to speak to the NFL or the NFLPA, I might drastically admire you citing that time and letting them know. That is one thing we discuss, and we’re coping with it. We’re transferring ahead and it is clearly behind our thoughts,” McCourty stated.

“That is why we’re simply making an attempt to do all the pieces we will – we’re distanced. Even right this moment whereas we have been in, we’re completely distanced, all of us have masks on, all of us have the Oakley shields on, and now we have a masks on beneath our helmet. We weren’t within the constructing, actually, in any respect right this moment. So we’re doing the required issues to remain as protected as doable.

“However no doubt, that is a thought – the identical approach you guys are sitting there fascinated about it, like ‘Hey, they’re getting on a airplane on Monday [to go to Kansas City], properly, these days do not actually add up with the incubation interval.’ That was the identical query we have been asking our union earlier than we head on the market.”

The Patriots took two planes to Kansas Metropolis – one crammed with those that had shut contact with Newton, the opposite with the remainder of the workforce. They traveled the morning of the sport, and returned instantly after.

McCourty stated alongside along with his brother Devin and particular groups captain Matthew Slater, “We’re making an attempt to proceed to push the envelope and maintain everybody accountable and ensure they’ve our greatest curiosity at coronary heart.”

In the meantime, he has determined to dwell in a resort, away from his household.

“That was form of a plan me and my spouse [Melissa] talked about earlier than the season even occurred, however we’re residing by a pandemic so you may’t simply assume like, ‘Hey, we’re by no means going to have a constructive check.’ [So] I’ll simply isolate myself away, ensure that I keep away till all the pieces is evident and the virus runs its course, and we’re all set earlier than I went again into the home,” he stated.

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