JOHN CLAYTON

Clayton: The vote to boycott OTAs will have a big impact on the Broncos

Apr 13, 2021, 2:14 PM
ENGLEWOOD, CO - AUGUST 20: Head coach Vic Fangio of the Denver Broncos walks on the field as Denver...
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

The NFL Players Association announced on Tuesday that Denver Broncos players will be the first team of players who will boycott OTAs, which begin Monday.

The only surprise is that the Broncos were the first team to agree to stay away. The union has been pressing the league for the past three weeks to go virtual with the offseason program.

Union president J.C. Tretter advised all players to boycott. I’m sure other players from other teams will follow suit in the next few days.

Concern about the pandemic is one of the main reasons, but the union really never liked the demand for player to be at team facilities for six weeks of training and learning. The NFLPA didn’t like the 10 OTA practices, thinking 10 was too many.

They would rather have to players learn on Zoom. Because OTAs are voluntary, the union used that as the basis to push for a boycott.

It wouldn’t surprise me if the league backs down and has a virtual offseason, but it probably wants the concession of having a minicamp for teams. That has to be negotiated. Only the June three-day minicamp is mandatory.

A lot of things will be hurt by this development. There are seven or eight college first-round prospects who opted out of last season. They haven’t been on the football field since 2019. Their return will be delayed.

It’s also going to cost players workout bonuses if they have them written into their contracts. It’s going to hurt new head coaches and it won’t help the five quarterbacks expected to go in the first round.

This will have an impact on the Broncos. If the Broncos draft a tackle in the first round, whether they stay at the ninth pick or trade down with New England, three of the top four tackles opted out last season and haven’t been on the field since 2019. If they stay at No. 9 and take Justin Fields or Trey Lance and there are no OTAs, the rookie quarterback’s first time on the field will be training camp.

Stay tuned. With this announcement, this should be interesting week of labor news.

John Clayton

Vic Fangio...
John Clayton

Clayton: The Broncos have devolved into a bit of a disaster

After a September to remember, the Broncos have seen a 3-0 start evaporate in a 14-day span, after a bad performance against the Raiders
4 days ago
ENGLEWOOD , CO - AUGUST 2: Courtland Sutton (14) of the Denver Broncos catches a pass during traini...
John Clayton

Clayton: The Broncos have been great in one area on offense

A year after dropping a ton of passes, Denver's receivers have been amongst the most sure-handed in the NFL so far this season
9 days ago
Pat Shurmur...
John Clayton

Clayton: Firing Pat Shurmur would be a panic move by the Broncos

After two losses to good teams, fans in the Mile High City are calling for the offensive coordinator's job, a step that would be unfair and unwise
10 days ago
kyle fuller...
John Clayton

Clayton: The strength of the Broncos has let them down in two losses

The Broncos have the most-expensive secondary in football, so it's a bit concerning when Lamar Jackson and Ben Roethlisberger pick them apart
11 days ago
Teddy Bridgewater...
John Clayton

Clayton: A good news day for the Broncos on the injury front

Less than 48 hours away from kickoff against the Steelers, the Broncos received some positive info on several starters who were questionable
14 days ago
ENGLEWOOD , CO - AUGUST 2: Pat Surtain II (2) of the Denver Broncos and Ronald Darby (21) run throu...
John Clayton

Clayton: The Broncos chances against the Steelers hinge on injuries

Getting good news when it comes to the status of injured starters will be vital to Denver having a chance on the road in Pittsburgh on Sunday
16 days ago
Clayton: The vote to boycott OTAs will have a big impact on the Broncos