The One Sure-Fire Way To Reduce Concussions In The NFL

Nov 05, 2011

Since the Browns really don’t have any major drama or storylines (note:  I am still trying to invent a sarcasm font), Chat Browns would like take a moment to address the league-wide issue of concussions.

On the heels of the study published this week by the Cleveland Clinic which showed that today’s helmets do no better at protecting players against concussions than those worn by my grandfather, I thought it would be appropriate point out that the solution to the NFL’s concussion problem lies within one of their other major issues.

The simple fact is that testing for HGH would inherently reduce the amount of concussions league-wide.  I am no doctor or physicist, but I did take one physics class in college and even I know that Force=Mass x Acceleration.   If players in the league aren’t able to take performance enhancing drugs, they won’t be as large (the mass), and thus the overall force of the collision won’t be as great. 

It stands to reason that concussions in the NFL have risen almost as fast as the average size of an NFL linebacker over the past 15 to 20 years.  But most efforts to reduce concussions have focused on eliminating blows to the head, or changing the way helmets protect the players.  Neither of those actually do anything to change the fact that the player’s brain is traveling at a high rate of speed, and then getting slammed against their skull upon impact. 

No helmet invention can change those factors, but having players who are not as big, and therefore can’t deliver as much force on impact, would directly reduce  the impact on the brain.  Getting hit by a 250 pound linebacker doesn’t have the same impact as getting hit by a 270 pound linebacker traveling at the same speed. 

There doesn’t need to be a study commissioned since the owners and players have apparently already agree to test for HGH, which is one of the many reasons that it is strange that the player’s union is attempting to delay the onset of HGH testing. It’s also odd that this doesn’t get talked about as much, because the player’s size these days is frequently cited as one of the reasons for the rising cases of concussions in the NFL. 

I’m not saying that when testing for HGH begins that concussions will be eliminated.  But I am saying that there will be a direct and measurable reduction in the number of concussions.  With player safety supposedly being paramount to everyone, it’s a measure that should be rushed into action.



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