JC Tretter Spoke to the Media Today 1/6/22

On the importance of Sunday’s game and finishing the 2021 season on a high note:

“We are all competitors. This is what we do. We go out there and compete. There are guys fighting for contracts next year and jobs next year. That matters to guys. That matters to us to go out there and perform at a high level and go out there and end the season the right way.”

On how the NFL and NFLPPA can potentially help prevent more soft-tissue injuries next season and in the future:

“We usually get the league-wide injury data a month or two after the season. We always pour through that to see what has gone on and what it looks like. I do not like making a lot of statements about it until we can really look at the numbers. There are always things league-wide we can improve on. That has been discussion for the last two years now when we talk about howe we handle training camp and how we handle the offseason. I am sure those discussions will continue. Sometimes I think the easiest way to describe it is you can have all of the safety measures in a car and you can do everything the right way, and when you get in an accident, it does not mean you will not get hurt and it does not mean bad things are not going to happen. You just give yourself a high likelihood of it not happening by doing the right things and being as safe as possible. Sometimes you just get the short end of the stick, but I would rather look through all of the data first before making any claims to see exactly what went on and what the injury rate was depending on what the injury is.”

On RB Nick Chubb’s performance this season and if Chubb ‘continues to amaze’ him:

“No, he is a special talent. He does some amazing things. We have a ton of talented backs in the league. I think Nick is right there with the rest of the guys. He can just do some really special things. He is a guy we like blocking for as an offensive line because he makes our job a lot easier, and even if we do not even do our job well, sometimes he makes us look good. That is the type of guy Nick is, and he is a phenomenal teammate too. He goes about his work the right way. I think the two teammates I hold in highest regard in my career are (former NFL WR) Jordy Nelson and Nick Chubb, who are both very similar guys of quiet, always did the right thing, always just worked hard and kept their mouth shut and was kind of the perfect example of what you should be doing.”

On the disappointment for QB Baker Mayfield to not be able to play in Sunday’s game and not finish the season due to injury:

“He was super banged up this year. I give him a ton of credit and appreciate how hard he fought to be out there with us each and every week. We knew he was going through a lot physically throughout the season. I am happy for him that he is going get fixed up, get feeling better and be able to come back ready to go next year ready to go and healthy again. I talked about it a month ago, people think the pain is tough when you play through injuries; a lot of it is the mental aspect of playing through injuries is very difficult because there are things that you are used to being able to do that you can’t anymore. Waking up every morning, the first thing you think about is how much pain you are in. That wears on everybody when guys are going through that. That is not an easy thing to do. I give Baker a ton of credit for going to bat for us all season and fighting to be ready on Sundays to play with us.”

On not reaching the playoffs this season:

“Definitely disappointing. You put the work in and you play to win a Super Bowl so when that opportunity is no longer there, it is a hard pill to swallow, but I think it shows us how much more work we need to go into next year and come back ready to go. It is definitely disappointing, but we need to learn from it and grow from it.”

On if it was challenging for him to decide to test for COVID-19 prior to the Packers game and the positive result ending his consecutive snaps streak:

“Like you said, it is a long snap streak. That game was probably the game I most did not want to miss, going back to Green Bay. I try to do the right thing, try to follow the rules and do what is right. I had some symptoms and did not want to be the guy who comes into the building and gets other people sick, and they miss games because of it. It is not always easy to do the right thing, but I think you always try to do the right thing. I think if you do that enough times, it works out for you in the end.”

On if he plans to return next season:


On his experience with COVID-19 and being on the reserve/COVID-19 list:

“My mom had actually gotten COVID two weeks earlier, and she had kind of a head cold. I woke up that day with a little bit of a head cold, and that was really the only reason why I thought to get tested because those were the symptoms she had two weeks earlier. I had not seen my mom. It is not like I got COVID from my mom. That is why it clicked in my head that I should probably get tested. It is tough missing time. I have not missed a game and not played in a week in a long, long time. It was a weird feeling being back on the couch and watching the game from home. It is not something I want to do again anytime moving forward. It was a tough thing not to be able to be out there and help the guys win.”

On his concerns as NFLPA President regarding Buccaneers WR Antonio Brown’s comment about being forced to play while injured:

“That is something you do not want to hear. I will not get too much into an individual person’s cases. That is always our policy. It is definitely something we have to look into and see what is going on down there.”

On advice he gives to NFL players as NFLPA players regarding situations involving player injuries and potentially being urged to play:

“Know your rights. I think we can help in a lot of ways as a union, but also what we have been preaching for a while now is guys taking control of their health and well-being. I think doing what is best for your health and well-being is always a priority and making sure that you stay safe and healthy and do not put yourself at further risk. We will not dive too much into his issues, but something we definitely need to look at.” 

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