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Defensive Player catch 22.
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeneralDissaray wrote:
I don't think until recently, players understood that repeated concussions can destroy their life. I would think most would assume that they will have headaches and some memory loss after their careers are done, but not Dimensia, severe depression, and loss of motor skills.

That's in part because we're still learning what the long term effects of those kinds of head injuries are. No one really knew what to look for or how to treat them because no one really ever had them because no normal person ever held a position which created them. Now that the old time football players are getting to the age where those ill effects take place, we can study them, treat them, and work to help them. The truly disingenuous aspect of the entire ordeal is the NFL trying to sweep this under the carpet without being willing to accept any of the culpability.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 01, 2013 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As someone who played football for 6 years (7th-12th grade), I am stuck right in the middle on this argument and honestly don't know where I stand on the subject. I was on the receiving end of 3 concussions and delivered 2 that I know of.

I had my first concussion in 8th grade. I was playing FB and our QB threw an INT. While trying to make the tackle, I got lit up by a blindside hit by the other team's LB. I was dizzy, had slightly blurred vision and was nauseated the rest of the game. I got the concussion on Thursday and had headaches all weekend. I practiced the following Monday with a slight headache. I didn't truly feel OK until the following Friday night.

My second concussion was the only time I ever got knocked unconscious. It was 10th grade and during practice, I was covering a kickoff. I made the mistake of looking up to see where the ball was, rather than focusing on the guys setting up the wedge. When I looked back down, all I saw was a facemask and then it was lights out. Our All State OT was 6' 6" tall, I was 5' 8" tall. He hit me facemask to facemask, but he didn't duck his head or lead with his head or anything dirty. He was just so much bigger than me that when he bent to block me, he gave me a shot to the head. He later told me that all he saw was me looking up, my head start to come down, my eyes getting as big as saucers and then the Nike swooshes on the bottom of my cleats. Laughing I had the same symptoms as before but I did miss a game because the hit occurred on a Wednesday and I couldn't play 2 days later because of the headaches.

The last concussion came as a Junior. I was playing DT and was trying to tackle a bruising RB. I knew I couldn't physically take him high, so I went low. Between the OG cut blocking me and the big arse RB running with high knees, I ended up taking a knee to the side of the helmet. The symptoms weren't as bad as the first 2 times, but I knew what had happened. I took a few plays off, shook off the cobwebs at halftime and went back in. I wasn't going to let our cross town rival ruin our homecoming.

As for the 2 concussions I gave, one was as a FB in 9th grade. I crushed a FS with a shoulder pad to the face mask. I didn't intentionally hit him there, but he ducked. I flattened him, we got the first down and life went on. I didn't feel bad about it. The 2nd one I know I gave came as a Senior playing DT. Due to a blown blocking assignment on a stunt, I had a free shot at the QB. I hit him in the blindside with my shoulder pad right at kidney level. I did as I was coached to do and wrapped him up. In the process, I ended up pinning his arms to his side driving him headfirst into the grass. He couldn't brace for the impact and faceplanted. He wasn't knocked out, but he did miss the rest of the game.

Of the 5 concussions that I know I was a part of, only the first 1 could've been deemed a cheap shot. When you sign up to play football, assuming you have ever seen the sport played before, you know injuries can and often do happen. It is a risk you accept every time you strap on the gear and step onto the field. Having said that, I don't mind the NFL trying to make the game safer for players. I think they should start by performing more rigorous testing on the helmets and requiring ALL players to wear proper fitting helmets with custom mouthpieces and keep their chinstraps buckled at all times.

I also think the helmet-to-helmet calls should go to instant replay like in the Alabama game earlier this season. Alabama's safety was going to be penalized and ejected from the game for a supposed helmet-to-helmet hit. Upon further review, it was deemed a legal hit and the player stayed in the game. Unlike the college game, I think the penalty should be nullified though.

My how the years have flown by.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

GeneralDissaray wrote:
Dallas94Ware wrote:
plan9misfit wrote:
TheGame316 wrote:
GeneralDissaray wrote:
Dallas94Ware wrote:
Ronnie Lott. Jack Tatum. Rodney Harrison. Brian Dawkins.

Those guys are some of the best safeties, and defensive players, of all time. Know what they all had in common? Bone jarring, concussion causing, lights out, high light reel hits.

In coverage, they weren't all that great. But their ability to smack a receiver so hard like that, worked just as good as instinctive ball swatting coverage. Such hits make receivers drop a would be catch. Such hits make receivers think twice before exposing their torso to make a leaping grab. Such hits make receivers 'lose the ball in the lights', and let it sail over their head, rather than take such a pop for trying to make the catch.

Those guys made their careers on the same hits that Brandon Meriweather is being chastised, fined and suspended for. And it must make those guys I mentioned above, sick to their stomachs. None of them would have been great players had they played in this new era of 'defenseless receivers.'

And as a fan of the NFL from way back in the early 80s, it ticks me off to see some of these hits drawing flags. It's football. If you don't want to be hit, don't lace 'em up. Everyone who does steps onto that field knowing they can be hurt, and I mean seriously hurt, on any given play. They accept that as part of their job description.

Do I want guys getting hurt? No, I mean I would much rather the stars stay healthy and let me watch them all season long. But such injuries and head trauma are part of the game. Changing the game so drastically just to save a few concussions a year is an insult to some of the best defenders to ever wear an NFL team's logo.

Then why did the retired players sue the NFL, if they were fine with the results of all the hits they took?

Because a bunch of greasy lawyers told them they could make some fast easy cash....

Or because there were serious, long term impacts from being hit in the head that much. Just ask Jim McMahon. He suffers from depression and massive memory loss from his playing days due to the brain damage he sustained.

I would say this, for sure.

Generaldissaray, I'm not saying the hits aren't dangerous or risking long term disability or injury. I'm saying, the players knew that when they suited up. They accepted that. It's like the mechanic who loses a finger on the the engine - they accept that such things can happen in their line of work.

But, also understand, it isn't that those players sued the NFL because their job was dangerous or because they regret how they played, or want the game to be 'softer.' They sued because the NFL wasn't ponying up enough money equivalent to how much they sacrificed for the NFL to make so much money off of their sacrifice. Their benefits SUCKED, and because of those disabilities from playing, they needed better benefits. That is what they sued for.

And as a result, the NFL decided to cover all their bases and make the game 'safer' - but in the backlash from that, they have erased a big draw from the game: the hits. And made it so we will never see the players who play defense like Jack Tatum, Ronnie Lott, Rodney Harrison etc ever again. Such players would be in debt from playing the game in that manner.

I don't think until recently, players understood that repeated concussions can destroy their life. I would think most would assume that they will have headaches and some memory loss after their careers are done, but not Dimensia, severe depression, and loss of motor skills.

It's been common knowledge that concussions can cause dementia and other forms of alzheimers (all of which result in a loss of cognitive and motor ability) for several decades. Concussions are caused by the brain impacting the skull, through the dura mater (the membrane meant to protect from such). How could you continually impact the brain and not cause brain injury? People have known the results for many decades.

The problem is just that players were uneducated and unaware; but the medical community definitely knew. But irregardless, the players didn't sue BECAUSE of their injury or brain trauma, but rather, because the NFL wouldn't fork over enough severance or benefits for them to be properly cared for after retiring.

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