View Full Version : Players want concussion expert on sidelines, NFL has resisted

09-24-2012, 10:37 PM
Posted by Mike Florio on September 24, 2012, 9:10 PM EDT (http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/09/24/players-want-concussion-expert-on-sidelines-nfl-has-resisted/)

Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub walks off the field after a hard hit took his helmet off against the Denver Broncos in their NFL football game in Denver Reuters

The Evander Holyfielding of Matt Schaub, with his helmet playing the role of Mike Tyson, created plenty of buzz and groans and other stuff that makes events like that newsworthy.

But lost in the incident was the fact that Schaub, who was blasted by Broncos linebacker Joe Mays, missed only one play.

So how did Schaub, who was holding his head on the ground with both hands, get cleared to return, given that anyone with a functioning brain would suspect that Schaub may have suffered an injury to his? The Texans claim that they followed NFL protocol.

“Our doctors . . . any time any player is on the field they go through the same protocol so the minute I went out there, [team doctor] Walt [Lowe] told me he’s fine, he’s got a big cut on his ear,” coach Gary Kubiak said after the game. “So, obviously they took him off the field and I knew it would be a play or two before he came back, but he was obviously very sharp. He was talking to me out there and Walt follows the same procedure all the time.”

With the NFL requiring an independent neurologist to clear a player to return from a concussion, why isn’t an independent neurologist involved in evaluating a player for a concussion? And why does the NFL continue to allow the evaluation to occur amid the noise and confusion of the sideline at an NFL game? In Schaub’s case, it just doesn’t seem like enough time was spent ensuring that Schaub is OK.

NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said during a Monday appearance on ESPN 980 in Washington (via SportsRadioInterviews.com) that the union has asked the league to have a “sideline concussion expert” at every game, and that the NFL is “fighting us on that, too.”

09-24-2012, 11:13 PM
When the players were being locked out, some people complained about these millionaire crybaby players wanting too much. Now that the refs are locked out, it's the refs that are being greedy. Meanwhile, the Billionaires' Club, raking in money hand over fist, is doing bad business and not even attempting good faith measures. Not many seem to be piling on the owners.

What did Chris Rock say about rich vs. wealthy?

09-25-2012, 12:05 AM
I figured the players and the owners were two big boys playing a good match.

On the refs I don't see where they have a lot of leverage and honestly I think some of them have too much longevity and think they are kings of the gridiron.

No the refs aren't ultra rich but this is a pretty damn good package for what is let's remember, a second job:

“Game officials on average earned almost $150,000 in 2011. Prior to the start of the lockout, we proposed a 7-year deal that would have increased average game official’s compensation more than 7 percent to just over $161,000 in 2012, and further increase that average to more than $189,000 by 2018. In addition, we have offered a generous defined contribution retirement plan, with average contributions of $16,500 in 2012, increasing to more than $22,300 per game official by 2018. Officials also receive numerous other benefits, including severance equal to one year’s game fees and postseason bonus, a period of guaranteed ‘time off’ from the end of the season through mid-May of each year, first-class air travel, and
partial reimbursement for medical insurance for officials who do not have insurance through their other jobs.”

Hey if they can pry more out, great, but I am not feeling sorry for them either.

I will say their opposition to extra reffing crews is troublesome to me and sounds like they don't want to be held accountable.

09-25-2012, 05:29 AM
Not sure why the owners wouldn't want concussion experts at each game ... ?

welsh texan
09-25-2012, 07:03 AM
Not sure why the owners wouldn't want concussion experts at each game ... ?

Because if a concussion expert is stood there and suddenly starts telling them all these guys are concussed and shouldn't play the negative to the money making machine is two-fold;

They do not have their star players in the game because the concussion experts refuse to let them back in

They lose upper ground in whatever cases are currently going through court claiming historical concussion injuries require compensation due to their previous negligence (firstly, if they need a concussion expert now, they clearly needed it then, secondly, the possibility that the number of demonstrable concussions going on in the game could grow exponentially).

All around, its a lot better for the NFL to let a physician who's on a teams payroll act in the interest of a team (making it far harder to pull a guy due to concussion) than it is to give them expert and independent care during games which could cause them a huge cost in court.

It isn't morally correct, but who here was thinking when Schaub came back in "Gosh, I hope they made the right decision in letting him back in the game so soon when he may be concussed", and who, as a fan, was thinking "Gosh, our billy big balls QB just dusted himself off and got back out there, thats a lot better than relying on our #2 QB to see us through this game".

I know I was in the second camp without the consequences even crossing my mind during game time.

This whole concussion issue has the potential to finish the sport off IMO, if it is proven that they're putting their longevity in danger out there, it won't be long before the lawsuits outweigh the revenue, and either the league will fold or the game will change beyond recognition. Worrying times, we all want to see the players healthy, but none of us would want to see that affect our own teams chance of success.