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Buccaneers’ Donovan Smith says playing during coronavirus pandemic is not worth the risk

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TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers starting left tackle Donovan Smith, the man responsible for protecting Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady’s blind side, said Friday morning that “risking my health, as well as my family’s health, does not seem like a risk worth taking” by playing during the coronavirus pandemic. In an Instagram post addressed to the NFL and NFLPA, Smith, who is expecting his first child in three weeks, raised many concerns about how he and teammates are supposed to protect themselves and their families and about the NFL’s testing protocols. He also questioned the NFL’s proposal to slash 35% of player salaries due to lost revenue. NFL players are set to report to training camps on July 28. The state of Florida — which has been one of the more aggressive states reopening — is seeing a surge of COVID-19 cases, with 244,151 positive cases as of Friday morning, up 11,385 from the previous day, with 4,102 total