Concussions Causing Issues in the NFL

Playing football is one of the only things that is as risky as betting big at an Online casino, and player safety is back in the news recently with this league. It’s been a few decades since the NFL was really hit hard when it came to concussions and CTE, and the league has done its best to make the game safer. 

There will always be some risk when playing the game of football, and some serious injuries occur from time to time. Unfortunately, it was Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa that suffered a bad injury on a Thursday Night Football Game, and it left a pretty lasting image.

After being sacked when trying to throw a pass, Tagovailoa had his head bounced off of the ground, and his body completely locked up. The Amazon Prime TV broadcast repeatedly showed a replay that had his fingers and hands locked up in an interesting position.

This would not have been such a big deal if the quarterback was in a similar position just a few days prior on Sunday. While playing the Buffalo Bills, Tagovailoa was hit hard, and he was evaluated for a concussion in that situation. 

It was eventually announced that Tagovailoa was cleared without a concussion, and he was dealing with a back injury. The Dolphins were able to come back and win that game behind their star QB, but for some reason, he remained in concussion protocol after that game.  

Tagovailoa Shouldn’t Have Been Cleared

It didn’t take long for someone to lose their job over this situation, and it just happened to be an independent neurotrauma consultant. Every team has a doctor and staff, but the league also makes sure that there are independent consultants on the sideline to give the final answer. 

It’s unclear why this consultant decided to clear Tagovailoa to return to the game, but it was clear that he made a mistake. Even if that was the decision made by this consultant, there should have been members of the Dolphins medical staff that knew that their star player should be sitting out. 

There were also several doctors on Twitter that predicted a serious injury for Tagovailoa if he got hit in the head again, and that is exactly what happened. 

Changes Coming to Protocol

The NFLPA released a statement just hours after Tagovailoa was taken to the hospital and immediately called for a change. A review of the entire incident was started almost immediately, and it is partly what got the independent consultant fired. 

The NFLPA has to be careful when discussing the concussion protocol because it was developed in conjunction with the league. Both sides are going to have to agree if there are changes made, but the players are not going to back down until something is done.

Commissioner Roger Goodell was questioned about this incident when attending the game over in London, and he expressed a belief that the protocol was followed in this situation. He also acknowledged that this would be looked at moving forward, but he wasn’t willing to give up many details. 

Referees Going the Other Way

Referees in the NFL are not stupid, and they have heard the chatter about player safety over the last few weeks. The league also confirmed that it sent a letter out to referees regarding player safety, and that message, unfortunately, is having a negative effect.

Week 5 of the NFL season was filled with a handful of ridiculous roughing-the-passer penalties, and some ended up impacting the outcome of the game. Recent NFL rules have made the game easier for quarterbacks to dominate, and they tend to punish the defense. 

The NFL has now had to come out and say that the roughing the passer call will be looked at more closely in the offseason, and it could mean that another rule change is coming. There are a number of different ways to keep NFL players safe, but not allowing the defense to get after the quarterback is going against the spirit of football.