Ravens Players Announce They Won't Participate in Voluntary OTA Workouts

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistApril 17, 2021

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) throws a pass for an interception during the second half of an NFL divisional round football game against the Buffalo Bills Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021, in Orchard Park, N.Y. The Bills won 17-3. (AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes)
Jeffrey T. Barnes/Associated Press

Baltimore Ravens players became the latest group Saturday to announced they will skip their team's voluntary in-person workouts this offseason. 

The NFLPA released the following statement on behalf of those players:


A statement from the Baltimore Ravens players: https://t.co/6FHGTO8kdM

Ravens players joined their counterparts from the New Orleans Saints, Los Angeles Rams, Miami Dolphins, Pittsburgh Steelers, Las Vegas Raiders, New York Giants, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos in choosing as a team to bypass voluntary, in-person workouts this offseason.

Players from the San Francisco 49ers, Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, Los Angeles Chargers, Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots and Chicago Bears, meanwhile, released statements saying they stood in solidarity with those players who choose to bypass such workouts, though they did not say they unanimously chose as a team to skip voluntary workouts. 

"The daily cases of [COVID-19] are higher now than last March when we decided that we were going to conduct the offseason much differently, conduct training camp differently and we were going to conduct the preseason differently," NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said in a video released on Twitter. "From the players' perspective, the goal remains the same: How do we conduct NFL football in the safest possible way?"


"From the players' perspective the goal remains the same–how do we conduct NFL football in the safest possible way?" –@demauricesmith https://t.co/1UiyoKLyUf


In 2011, we fought to make offseason work voluntary so players could make the best decision on their health + safety. Why? 👇 The single most determining factor about whether a player makes a roster is whether or not you suffer a missed-time injury before the season starts. https://t.co/UBMl7Cf6yr

One factor individual players will have to weigh is the financial implications of skipping such workouts, with some players having bonuses tied to their attendance. Players on the fringes of the roster may also want to attend in-person workouts to communicate with coaches as quickly as possible, while star players with assured roles may be more inclined to skip such workouts because of coronavirus concerns. 

Regardless, many of the league's players are presenting a unified front in supporting those who skip the voluntary workouts.