Law School Yes, Football No

In the news recently is an undrafted free agent that was signed by the Cleveland Browns, Andrew Sweat.  Not because of his prowess on the gridiron, which was decent enough to get a look, rather his career change.  Some are surmising that this can be due to concussions or the risk of them.

Sweat had a concussion in college and prior to the mini-camp he had an accident that made the decision easier to pursue a law career;

Then on the morning he was preparing to report to training camp last Friday, Sweat slipped and hit his head in the shower. Not that hard, he said. But hard enough to cause his concussion symptoms to return. So he took the final slip as a sign and decided to end his career as a football player, realizing that he’d been struggling with his decision to give football another chance all along.

“When I fell, it scared me,” Sweat said. “Football is not worth my health. It’s really important to me that I’m able to have a family and a life after football. Football is a great game, but when you have a concussion like that, it’s not worth it.”

It wasn’t just headaches or dizziness that brought major Continue reading

Fujita To Lobby Players Association

Not only is Scott Fujita a veteran on the NFLPA Executive Committee but he is a concussion “survivor” as I call them.  Someone who has experienced the injury and managed it correctly.  Scott Fujita plays for the Cleveland Browns the same team that DID NOT perform a concussion evaluation on Colt McCoy last Thursday (in my humble opinion I think the Browns have had a very good track record up until this incident);

“The one thing I know is that when it comes to this issue, players, coaches, and team medical personnel struggle in the heat of the moment,” Fujita said earlier in the day, in an email sent both to King and to PFT.  “This has been an ongoing problem for years.  The game-day sideline is intense, there’s a lot going on, and we can’t always count on everyone to make the most responsible decisions.”

Because of this Fujita has told Peter King and myself that there will be dialogue on the matter of placing someone truly independent on the sidelines to avoid the situation; Continue reading

Why So Afraid?

After James Harrison of the Steelers basted Colt McCoy of the Browns with a borderline illegal hit everyone (well not everyone but many) were concerned with the immediate effects and a possible concussion.

The Browns were fast to let the world know that McCoy didn’t have a concussion.  This was required speak because they did not even properly evaluate McCoy for a concussion.  I did not see any overt signs at the time, but that means nothing.  What is even more interesting is that McCoy was reported to have some delayed symptoms;

They’re awfully quick to dismiss the possibility considering McCoy showed the after-effects of a player who had been concussed. McCoy told the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram that he didn’t remember the hit, and he was still glassy-eyed 20 minutes after the game. The Browns P.R. staff also asked reporters to turn off their lights during McCoy’s post-game availability session.

Straight from the horse’s mouth we have: memory loss, vision disturbance/fogginess, and sensitivity to light.  When I evaluate for a concussion on the sidelines and after games of high school players 3 reported symptoms are enough to warrant the assessment of concussion.  In fact after a report and clinical evaluation/questions that would end the assessment right there and they would be sent off to a quiet room/home.

So why are NFL teams so afraid to label concussions, concussions?  I have no freaking clue.

NFL Player Returns then is Out

The Cleveland Browns had a similar situation, as Stewart Bradley in Philly, this past weekend.  Tight end Evan Moore took a shot from Kansas City Chief Kendrick Lewis and was “rocked”.

According to Tom Withers of the AP

After going down, Moore shook his head as he has done after taking big hits before and jogged to Cleveland’s sideline, where he was met by team trainers. He felt normal and told them so. The 6-foot-6, 250-pounder had taken jarring hits and figured this was just another one.

“It was a good hit,” Moore said, “but I didn’t black out or anything. When I took the hit, Continue reading