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Tom Brady gave his seal of approval on a unifying message from the NFL Players Association president, Cleveland Browns offensive lineman JC Tretter, Thursday.
Tretter praised Brady for sounding off on some of the issues plaguing players, including the addition of a 17th game to the regular season. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers star also called for a more unified union in hopes of standing up to pressure from owners when it comes to negotiating the collective bargaining agreement.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady smiles as he runs off the field after a game against the Chicago Bears Oct. 24, 2021, in Tampa, Fla.
(AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
In this Jan. 10, 2021, photo, Cleveland Browns center JC Tretter (64) snaps the ball during the first half of a wild-card playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh.
(AP Photo/Don Wright, File)
Tretter echoed Brady’s sentiments in statement released Thursday.
“Tom wants players to win, understanding that the only way we can do this is by acting as a unified group. His comments on his show this week give me an opportunity to reiterate the goals I have set since becoming president and honestly address the challenges we face as a membership,” Tretter said.
“This line from Tom spoke the most to me about our challenge: ‘We have union leadership, which absolutely does the best they can based on the circumstances that they have, but it is very challenging to get 1,500 players to agree.’
“He’s right. And there’s no doubt that it is harder for our membership to act in a united way, given our diverse makeup that sometimes results in competing interests within our own ‘team.’ We have young players, minimum salary players, star QBs, special teams veterans, practice squad hopefuls and more within a membership that has a turnover rate of nearly 25% every year. The NFL owners have 31 billionaires who are in this game for life.
“Tom is challenging us to move in a way similar to the owners, which is to act as a unified group, even if we disagree, and fight in a coordinated way for what we deserve. The formula is not complicated, but getting everyone to commit to this formula is much more difficult for us than it is for them.”
Tretter wrote that everybody in the union — not just Brady and not just a small group of people — needs to share the values of the union’s issues.
In this Dec. 8, 2019, file photo, Cleveland Browns center and NFLPA President JC Tretter walks off the field after a game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Cleveland.
(AP Photo/David Richard, File)
“We, the players, must commit ourselves to more than just lip service and come together to establish a culture of unity,” Tretter wrote.
“We need every one of our members to not only understand this truth, but be willing to act on it, together.”
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