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Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Here's What Confused NFL Players Are Doing This Morning

Illustration for article titled Heres What Confused NFL Players Are Doing This Morning

Showing up to work out, some of them. Except not really working out. And the ones that arrived are either union guys checking the lay of the land, or players openly concerned about their workout bonuses. Mostly, players walked in, hung around for a couple of minutes then went home. Everyone's pretty confused.


With the lockout off for the time being, everything should technically be operating as normal. It's not, of course, but on the NFL calendar, players should be able to work out at team facilities. For some, a lot of cash rides upon it. So what are they to do today?

The league's not sure either. "If a player comes to the facility, he will be treated courteously and with respect," spokesman Greg Aiello said. But there are apparently no trainers in site. So players are just popping their heads in and leaving.


NFL beat writers, because they are insane people in an insane world starved for football news, are staking out practice facilities across the country. (PFT and USA Today have good rundowns of who they've spotted.)

Because everything in this lockout has been all about money, it's refreshing to hear from players who admit they just showed up this morning because of the stipulations in their contracts.

At Redskins Park, Lorenzo Alexander:

"I do have a workout bonus, and since the lockout is lifted out," he said. "I wanted to make sure I took full advantage to come up here and work out because I don't want some technicality to happen later: 'You didn't show up. You didn't come.' And then I'm out of my workout bonus."


Or D'Brickashaw Ferguson, who stands to collect a $750,000 bonus:

"It only makes sense for a guy with a big workout bonus," [his agent Brad] Blank said. "It's not going to be a huge thing. He'll go to the office, the security guard will say, ‘No, I can't let you in' and he'll leave quietly. It's not going to be James Meredith at Mississippi, with the national guard."


(Ferguson showed up to Jets facilities to inform assembled media that his appearance should count as a workout, then left.)

So that's what's happening. Farcical, but no more farcical than anything else that's happened over these weeks and months. And things will stay cloudy at least until tomorrow morning, as that's the next in a series of deadlines and decisions that could play out in various courtrooms. Basically, no one knows anything, and Roger Goodell is pissed.

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