DeMarcus Lawrence weighed his options and reached a conclusion.
Rather than voluntarily opt out of the 2020 season and collect a $150,000 stipend, the Dallas Cowboys‘ star defensive end will report to the team facility Tuesday to start training camp, per NFL Network’s Jane Slater.
The decision comes one week after Lawrence, whose pregnant wife Sasha is due in October, admitted he was unsure about his camp participation due to concerns over the coronavirus.
“I’m taking it one day at a time, talking with my team and trying to figure out as many details as possible before I make a decision and have it set in stone,” he told ESPN. “Shoot, I love to ride with my brothers and play the game of football. When I have to take that away from myself, it’s hard and I don’t want to make a decision like that. But I also have to make sure I’m taking care of my family. Family is No. 1. After the game of football is done, that’s the only thing I have to depend on, so I’ve got to take care of them.”
Lawrence, who inked a $105 million extension in 2019, may have been required to repay part of his $25 million signing bonus had he not shown up to camp. It’s unclear if that was a contributing factor in his choice.
Nevertheless, he’ll convene at The Star with his veteran teammates to begin testing, as part of the NFL’s newly-enacted COVID-19 protocols. All players must pass three virus tests — administered on Days 1, 2, and 4 — to gain entry into the building.
From there, following the elimination of preseason, players will receive a 21-day acclimation period and undergo several virtual meetings prior to a padded practice taking place. Strength and conditioning workouts are slated to commence Aug. 3.
The NFL on Monday approved the Cowboys’ Infectious Disease Emergency (IDER) Plan, according to the Dallas Morning News, clearing the way for camp to kick off.
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