Lions Vet Jamie Collins Warns Youngsters: 'Don't Mess Up Our Money'

"Men look at it totally different than boys," he said.

Will Burchfield
July 27, 2020 - 3:05 pm

The NFL isn't messing around. 

With the threat of COVID-19 looming over the 2020 season, the league reportedly struck an agreement with the NFLPA over the weekend barring players from indoor places like night clubs, bars and churches that allow more than 25 percent capacity. Violators will be fined. And those who test positive will not be paid for any games they're forced to sit out.

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It won't be an easy rule to enforce, especially when it comes to young players. Take it from Lions linebacker Jamie Collins. 

“We gotta find a way to get all 90 guys to do the right thing. That’s hard," Collins said in Peter King's weekly column. "New guys, rookies, might want to get out and party. It’s not just about one person. You bleed together, you sweat together, you do not want to play with vets’ money. Men look at it totally different than boys. Kids are gonna be kids, especially in a new environment for the first time. That’s gonna be really important.”

Collins Says Lions 'Gonna Start Winning Right Now'

Collins signed a three-year, $30 million deal with Detroit this offseason. He's not keen on forfeiting any of that cash because a young player fails to take the proper precautions amid a global pandemic. 

"We’ll be talking to the young guys about what to do at night," he said. "I’ll never tell a guy not to live, but I will tell ‘em: ‘Stay home, be smart. Don’t mess up our money.’"

Collins, 30, isn't alone. Bengals safety Vonn Bell, entering his fifth year in the league, raised similar concerns when speaking with King. 

"You got guys who aren’t going to listen to the protocols, who want to live life their way. One guy could ruin a whole team," he said. "It’s crucial for guys to understand you can’t be selfish. Gotta think about team. Fight the temptation. I’m gonna make sure I talk to guys, say, ‘Stay in, think about the team.'" 

The Lions, rookies included, will report to Allen Park on Tuesday for the initial stages of training camp, with team-wide testing through Friday. Padded practices are expected to begin in the middle of August following a ramp-up period for conditioning.