Free agent and former Arizona Cardinals right tackle Eric Winston has been named the new head of the NFL Players Association (NFLPA), according to an NFLPA press release. Winston takes over for former Atlanta cornerback Dominque Foxworth who steps down after his term expired.
USAToday’s Tom Pelisserio had a Q&A with Winston and it was quite in-depth about Winston and how he will handle the new role. Here are a couple key quotes from the interview.
On workplace rules and safety: “We can’t let happen what happened in Miami, and in a lot of ways, what happened in Tampa can be just as devastating. You’ve got a kicker (Lawrence Tynes) that’s on an IV drip I think through his heart for – I don’t even know if he’s off of it yet. My biggest problem was that it should have been avoided and it could’ve been avoided by some standard, obvious practices that weren’t in place,” WInston said.
On expanding the playoff field and/or the regular season: “I can tell you 16 to 18’s dead in the water. I won’t let it happen. I don’t think any of these other guys are going to let it happen. It’s a safety issue. Now, if you’re start talking about playoff games, how is that structured? How is that worked out? What are we talking about here? How’s that other team getting in? I think it goes to a broad structure and it speaks differently than we’re talking about having 32 teams play two more games apiece. That’s a very microscopic view of one more playoff team (per conference), and that’s something that will be looked at and looked at hard by the players because there are some guys that might want it. But if it’s some broad stroke, then we’re probably not going to go for it.”
The Cardinals also have a pair of players on the Executive Committee in Lorenzo Alexander and Jay Feely. All told, 7 of the 10 spots on the executive committee changed as did the presidency.
Winston remains a free agent.