Late Friday night, Kansas City Chiefs offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif announced that he was opting out of his contract and will not be playing football in 2020.
He wrote the following on Twitter: “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.
Being at the frontline during this offseason has given me a different perspective on this pandemic and the stress it puts on individuals in our healthcare system. If I am to take risks, I will do it caring for patients.
I want to thank everyone in the Kansas City Chiefs organization for their support and understanding.”
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The Good Doctor
Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who has a degree in medicine with a Doctor of Medicine and a Master of Surgery, has been helping as an orderly with the fight against COVID-19 in his hometown of Quebec, Canada. When the outbreak began, he wanted to help combat the virus at a long term care facility.
Back in April, Duvernay-Tardif talked to Sports Illustrated about the decision to put his medical skills to use.
“My shift started at 7:30 a.m. I found out that I would be working for now in more of a nursing role, helping relieve the workers who have already been in place. There’s so much that needs to happen just to visit with every patient- masks donned and hands washed and equipment like gloves and visors tugged on and off and thrown away. I handled a medication cart, making sure to administer the right dosage and in the proper way. Honestly, I was drained after, and looking forward to going back.”
Going Out On A High Note?
Who knows what the future holds for Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, in terms of football and the Kansas City Chiefs. The former sixth round pick in 2014 our of McGill University in Canada, has appeared in 60 NFL games. He has fought through injuries to make 57 starts and win a Super Bowl ring.
After a restructured contract for 2020, the guard would have earned $2.75 million. Instead, Duvernay-Tardif will now earn $150,000 for opting out. This was the last year of his contract, and the money does not matter for him. He is more so looking to make an impact during the pandemic. Regardless if he ever suits up for the Chiefs again or not, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif will garner much respect throughout the season and in the future.
– Braden Holecek is the Kansas City Chiefs managing editor for Full Press Coverage. He covers the NFL. Like and follow on Follow @ebearcat9//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js Follow @FPC_Chiefs//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js and Facebook.