One of the most popular ways for NFL players to show respect for one another during the season is to swap jerseys after games, but that will not be allowed during the 2020 season. Richard Sherman finds that a bit ridiculous.
The NFL and NFL Players Association sent some game-day health and safety protocols to teams on Wednesday night, and included among them was a ban on postgame jersey exchanges. Players will be required to remain at least six feet from one another while interacting after games.
NFL teams will be forbidden from postgame interactions within 6 feet of each other and jersey exchanges between players will be prohibited during the 2020 season, sources say.
Another way the NFL will look different in the COVID-19 world.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 9, 2020
As Sherman sees it, that is another example of the NFL’s hypocrisy. The San Francisco 49ers star mocked the league for not allowing jersey exchanges but claiming games can safely be played with full contact.
This is a perfect example of NFL thinking in a nutshell. Players can go engage in a full contact game and do it safely. However, it is deemed unsafe for them to exchange jerseys after said game. https://t.co/fWefsUSVDc
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) July 9, 2020
Obviously, the NFL knows there is some sort of risk involved with playing a contact sport. But unless Sherman is saying the season should be canceled altogether, he must understand what the league is trying to accomplish.
With the NFL and NFLPA committed to having a season, there is no way to avoid having players tackling each other and anything else that comes along with playing a game. What can be done, however, is limiting postgame interactions — such as jersey exchanges — that are not essential to game-day operations. There’s no way to assure players won’t pass the coronavirus to one another, but eliminating close contact that isn’t necessary means there will be one less opportunity for them to do so.
Sherman seems to have issues with a lot of things that have gone on in the NFL this offseason, so we’re not surprised he feels strongly about the ban on swapping jerseys.