August 6, 2020
Laurent Duvernay-Tardif won a Super Bowl ring last February as the right guard for the Kansas City Chiefs. He was slated to earn $2.75 million this coming season. Instead, he has become the first NFL player to “opt out” of the season, and accept a salary of $150,000 instead.
The Canadian-born Duvernay-Tardif, who played college ball at that football hotbed McGill University in Montreal, is also a medical school graduate. Since the coronavirus pandemic struck, he has been working as an orderly in a long-term care facility in Quebec. Instead of playing pro football, he plans to continue at that job.
As he stated in his Twitter post, “Being at the frontline during this offseason has given me a different perspective on this pandemic and the stress it puts on individuals and our healthcare system. I cannot allow myself to potentially transmit the virus in our communities simply to play the sport that I love. If I am to take risks, I will do it caring for patients.”