Chiefs’ Duvernay-Tardif first player to opt out of NFL season due to COVID-19

In this Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020 photo, Kansas City Chiefs offensive guard Laurent...
In this Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020 photo, Kansas City Chiefs offensive guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif (76) speaks during a news conference in Aventura, Fla., for the NFL Super Bowl 54 football game. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson) (KY3)
Published: Jul. 24, 2020 at 8:58 PM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (WIBW) - Kansas City Chiefs lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who used his doctorate in medicine to assist on the frontlines of the pandemic, is the first player to opt out of his NFL season due to COVID-19.

Duvernay-Tardif tweeted his decision Friday.

“This is one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make in my life but I must follow my convictions and do what I believe is right for me personally,” he wrote on Twitter. “That is why I have decided to take the Opt Out Option negotiated by the League and the NFLPA and officially opt out of the 2020 NFL season.”

Duvernay-Tardif added there is “no doubt in [his] mind” the Chiefs’ medical staff have a strong plan to minimize health risks for the upcoming season, but that some risks still remain with the virus.

“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,” he continued. “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.”

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