Coming this year, fans will be permitted to bring less stuff into the stadium and players will be required to wear more stuff onto the field.
Neither are happy.
Browns receiver Greg Little says he won’t comply with the requirement that players were thigh and knee pads, a mandate that returns in 2013 after a 19-year hiatus.
“I’m definitely not wearing pads,” Little tells Tom Reed of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “It’s just a swag thing. If you don’t feel good, you’re not gonna play good.”
For many players, it’s less about vanity than speed. Wearing pads encumbers the right-leg-left-leg process, diminishing the ability to get from point A to point B ASAFP.
But paying the fines and not wearing the pads won’t be an option. Players will be removed from play if they refuse to comply.
Some think the league is simply trying to create the impression that it cares about player safety, at a time when more than 4,000 former players have filed concussion lawsuits. Others think the league wants to promote the use of distinctive Nike compression shorts that are equipped with pads — which in turn will prompt players at lower levels of the sport to clamor for the same gear.