The NFL is clamping down on what the league considers to be “non-standard” face masks and Washington Redskins linebacker Brian Orakpo isn’t happy about it.
Orakpo is one of many players, including New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck and Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett, to wear face masks that featured additional bars. Orakpo confirmed to Mark Maske of the Washington Post that he is one of a handful of players the league is requiring to change the face mask they use to a standard model.
It’s a decision that Orakpo isn’t happy with, though he’ll accept the change if he has to.
“I don’t know,” Orakpo said. “It’s kind of tough. Obviously it’s different. And it does have a sort of look appeal to it. But it’s also for protection as well. We’re supposed to be all about protection and we get denied for something that benefits us. It’s something that’s kind of disheartening.”
Orakpo said he is still hoping to get the decision reversed so he can continue to wear his current design.
“Hopefully we can,” he said. “We’re obviously in the process right now of trying to get it cleared again. But right now we’re denied so we just have to go with what they say.”