Laurent Duvernay-Tardif using his platform as a player and a doctor

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The only NFL player who is also a medical doctor is thinking a lot more about health than football right now.

Chiefs offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif is a doctor without a practice right now. He offered to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic in any way he can in his native Montreal, and he was told the best thing he can do is spread the message about the importance of social distancing, hand washing and other steps to prevent the spread of the virus.

“I’m kind of in a grey zone right now. I graduated, I got my MD, but I haven’t applied to a residency program yet,” he told John Kryk of the Toronto Sun. “So I don’t have a licence number or anything. Usually, people jump right from being a student into a residency program. I’ve been in touch with both public health authorities, and the Quebec government and the McGill faculty as well, to see what is the best role I can do to contribute. And basically what we decided it was best for me to kind of use my [fame] in Quebec to try to reinforce the public-health measure of social distancing, and all the hygiene measures — and relay that information, especially to younger individuals.”

Duvernay-Tardif said anyone focused on when the NFL can start offseason workouts is focused on the wrong things.

“There is going to be another football season after this one, and one after that, and one after that,” he said. “That’s what we have to fight for right now, not the immediate spring training. This is bigger than football.”

That’s important perspective, from a football player and from a doctor.

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