For a running back at his age and stature of being on a Super Bowl-caliber team had to be very tough choice and family has to come first.
KSL Sports Scott Mitchell – a 12-year NFL veteran – is completely understanding to why Williams and others are opting not to play but he does mention that not playing comes with some career concerns, like loss of income.
“I get that they can do this and I get having family members and people close to you that that might have issues and you want to protect those people,” Mitchell said. “Here’s a cold, hard reality, a professional football more than I think any other sport, you have a window and the window doesn’t stop for a virus, doesn’t stop for social injustice. It doesn’t stop for anything.”
This makes this decision to sit out and not play very difficult. Players get a year older and can miss out on a lot of money so players need to be sure of themselves. Mitchell goes on to say that time is very valuable in the NFL as no one will play forever.
“You have to make hay right now. I mean, this is your opportunity. It’s your time,” He added. That may sound kind of, you know, harsh or whatever but it’s just a reality. The league, your life, your physical ability to do this isn’t going to say, ‘Oh, yeah, you know, that year that you had where there was a virus here, you know, take it off.'”
Some players are going to have to make the tough choice in getting a year’s worth of pay or improving one’s game to get that next big contract, so the trade-off is extreme and not an easy decision to make.
It all comes back to money because there is nearly no other post-football career that can pay what the NFL pays. If Mitchell were playing today he would lean toward suiting up because a year lost of one’s prime playing career is something that can not be made up.
“Financially in the real world, you just don’t make this kind of money,” Mitchell said. “You just don’t get the opportunity to do that and really set yourself up and set your family up and be in a good place financially in the future. Not a lot of people get that opportunity and you got to take advantage of it.”
The choice is a hard one to make, especially with so much money on the line this year and going forward. Go ahead and play as normal and take all the precautions necessary to not get you and your close ones ill and advance your career.
The other option is to just sit out the year and be safe and no one should be blaming anyone for choosing to sit and choose health over earning a lucrative NFL contract.