Bears, Giants, seven other teams decline to participate in voluntary offseason workouts amid NFLPA urging

Through the NFLPA, players from nine different NFL teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Seattle Seahawks, New England Patriots and New York Giants; have issued statements expressing their intent to forgo participating in voluntary offseason workouts. The statements were released amid NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith and president JC Tretter issuing a letter to players encouraging them to not attend voluntary workouts because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Each of the following teams has expressed solidarity with the plan to skip workouts: The Bears, Broncos, Browns, Buccaneers, Giants, Lions, Patriots, Raiders and Seahawks.

The NFLPA’s leadership has been operating under

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Shohei Ohtani is proving his legendary status once again

Welcome to The Opener, where every weekday morning you’ll get a fresh, topical column to start your day from one of SI.com’s MLB writers.

There was a point last year when it was easy to feel that Shohei Ohtani was simply a good baseball player.

Of course, “a good baseball player” is not a bad thing, no matter the context. But it could have felt like a bit of a letdown here. It was a revision of the old conventional wisdom on Ohtani—which was that he was a unicorn, a miracle, a revelation unto himself.

Denny Medley/USA TODAY Sports

Ohtani’s

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Lions, Tigers, Pistons executives sign letter against Michigan voting restrictions

The voting restriction bill that recently passed in Georgia brought a lot of controversy to the state, and now Michigan might be next. 

In response to a Republican-sponsored bill proposed in the Michigan legislature that would make it tougher for disenfranchised populations to exercise their constitutional right to vote, mlive.com reported that top executives from Detroit’s four major sports teams signed a letter that objects to any legislation that makes it harder to vote. 

Detroit Lions president Rod Wood, Detroit Tigers and Detroit Red Wings owner Christopher Ilitch, and Detroit Pistons vice chairman Arn Tellem all signed the letter that

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Alex Rodriguez responds after Timberwolves’ Anthony Edwards said ‘I don’t know who that is’

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Getty Images

Over the weekend, it was revealed that former MLB star Alex Rodriguez and billionaire Marc Lore are going to become the new owners of the Minnesota Timberwolves. The high-powered duo has earned exclusive negotiating rights for the next 30 days and it’s expected that they’ll finalize a deal with Timberwolves current owner Glen Taylor during that time frame.

With Rodriguez set to take control of the NBA franchise, several Timberwolves players, including star big man Karl-Anthony Towns, are on board with the former New York Yankees third baseman taking control over. However, rookie Anthony Edwards isn’t quite as

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Molly Lillard, daughter of Jets’ Al Toon, dies in murder-suicide

Michigan’s Molly Toon, right, attempts to score during an NCAA tournament game in 2012. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

Molly Lillard, a standout University of Michigan volleyball player and daughter of New York Jets great Al Toon, was shot and killed by her husband in what police are calling an apparent murder-suicide, the Arizona Republic reported.

Lillard (née Toon while at Michigan) was found with gunshot wounds in front of a house in Scottsdale, Arizona, around 5 p.m. on Sunday, police said. She was taken to the hospital and died of her injuries. Police identified her husband, 36-year-old Royce Lillard III,

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Effort to save Stanford sports gains traction: ‘Productive’ meeting with president

The door is cracked open to Stanford sports reinstatement.

That’s the takeaway from Tuesday’s meeting between 36SportsStrong and university brass. The alumni group committed to saving the 11 Stanford sport programs slated for termination met by video conference with Stanford decision makers, including President Marc Tessier-Lavigne.

“It was a productive meeting,” said Jeremy Jacobs, a former volleyball player and the spokesman for 36SportsStrong. “It is clear that President Tessier-Lavigne is considering our petition to reinstate the sports and our proposal to self-fund the teams. He told us he would consider it over the next few weeks. We will stay engaged

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