NFLPA Presses NFL to Implement New Concussion Protocol Ahead of Sunday’s Games

by Jonathan Howard
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Before Sunday’s slate of NFL games, the NFL Player’s Association is urging them to implement the new concussion protocols. Of course, the league and the union have been working together to amend these protocols. The Tua Tagovailoa controversy sent waves through the league. They want players to be protected heading into the weekend.

Ever since the Tua injury (injuries), there have been a lot of discussions around concussions. Particularly how the NFL and its teams need to treat them. Players are hit and beat up on almost every play. But player safety needs to be a top priority.

In the Thursday Night Football matchup between Denver and Indianapolis, we saw Nyheim Hines go down early. He got up and started to stumble around. That is the definition of what the NFLPA’s new protocols refer to as “gross motor instability.” So, Hines was taken out of the game, despite the new protocol not being implemented officially.

NFL, NFLPA Statements on Concussion Protocols

The Player’s Association wants to make sure there is no chance of a player going through what Tua went through again. Here is the statement asking the NFL to adopt the new concussion protocols.

“Our union has agreed to change the concussion protocols to protect players from returning to play in the case of any similar incident to what we saw on Sept. 25,” the NFLPA said according to the AP. “We would like these changes to go into effect before this weekend’s games to immediately protect the players and hope the NFL accepts the change before then as well.”

In response, the NFL put out its own statement on concussion protocols. The league has not confirmed if they will adopt the new policies. With just a day in between now and Sunday, we could hear an update in the next 24 hours or so.

“As we have discussed with the NFLPA, we agree that changes to the joint NFL-NFLPA protocols are necessary to further enhance player safety,” the league said. “We have already spoken to members of the NFL Head, Neck and Spine Committee and the leadership of the Unaffiliated Neurotrauma Consultants and Independent Certified Athletic Trainers who serve as spotters to discuss these likely changes”