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Steelers Safety DeShon Elliott Rips Idea of an 18-Game Schedule: ‘All They Care About Is Making Money’



Pittsburgh Steelers FS DeShon Elliott

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell expressed on the Pat McAfee Show during the draft that he’s in favor of eliminating one of the three current preseason games to expand the regular-season schedule from 17 games to 18.

“I’d rather replace a preseason game with a regular-season game any day,” Goodell said. “That’s just picking quality. If we got to 18 and two, that’s not an unreasonable thing.”

Goodell pulled back on that comment at the spring league meeting in May, but acknowledged it is something the league considers as part of its future plans. Goodell said an 18-game schedule would have to be agreed to by the NFL Players Association.

“The key thing for us is looking at making sure we continue to do the things that make our game safer,” Goodell said. “Seventeen games is a long season, so we want to make sure we look at that and make sure that we continue the safety efforts.”

Steelers safety DeShon Elliott isn’t a fan an 18-game schedule. He thinks the NFL is already taking advantage of the players.

“They’re not paying us enough money already,” Elliott said, per ESPN’s Brooke Pryor. “They’re stingy with their money, so they want to make us play 18 games, as a player union, we should get way more money than what we’re getting—and not just the top guys.

“And the thing is, they’re not out here playing football. They’re not here running around putting their bodies on the line. They don’t care. All they care about is making money, but if you’re going to make money on the top end, the bottom end has to make money too.”

According to Pryor, Elliott and Steelers free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick were part of the 19% of players surveyed who were completely against regular-season schedule expansion.

“Why do we keep adding games?” Fitzpatrick asked. “I think 17 is more than enough, plus a playoff. … The dudes that play a hundred percent of the snaps in the regular season are probably barely playing in the [removed] preseason game, so it doesn’t really do too much.”