I watch a lot of football. I love the whole thing. The atmosphere, the hype, the intensity, the predictions, the standings, the wagers, the playoffs... pretty much everything. Except the injuries.
Honestly, before I had a son, I thought very little about the injuries. I figured, they knew the risks going in there, and they're on board and still playing, so who am I to judge. But then news of different retired players suffering from multiple neurological disorders, and the shocking announcement of Junior Seau and Dave Duerson committing suicide and all the allegations relating it back to head injuries made me look at football in a whole new way. Duerson even donated his brain to the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy at Boston University in his last letter begging them to research how the hits had an effect on him.
I won't tell my son he can't, but I will definitely encourage him in other directions.
Jay Cutler (Chicago Bears) was crushed by Tim Dobbins (Houston Texans) last night and took him out of the game. Cutler stayed in for a few plays after the hit, so it was difficult for the Bears to determine if he had a concussion at that time, but it was what happened afterwards that gave me pause. When Dobbins was asked if he thought his hit gave Cutler the concussion, he replied, "I have no idea, No clue. But it was good that he was out though. You always want the quarterback out of the game."
It's that kind of mentality of the players, and the fact that even though Dobbins only received a penalty flag for going helmet to helmet after Cutler released the ball instead of getting thrown out of the game shows that the NFL is not yet serious about player safety.
I realize there is risk in any sport, but it seems like the onslaught of ads by the NFL that state everything they're doing for football safety is primarily lip service. They're trying to give the fans what they want, while the players are the ones that suffer. You may say making millions isn't suffering, but if it affects your quality of life that dramatically, is it really worth it?
For some, probably yes. For me? I'm hoping my son joins the bowling team.