NFL looking at more steps to reduce hits to head

Alan Schwarz reported in today’s New York Times on the NFL’s continued emphasis on player safety, specifically focusing on eliminating dangerous hits to the head.

“The N.F.L.’s recent movement toward eliminating particularly dangerous tackles suggests that some of the collisions like those seen Sunday night could be forbidden as early as next season,” Schwarz wrote. “Given how youth and high school football tend to follow the N.F.L.’s lead, the changes could affect more than just professionals.”

Said NFL executive vice president of football operations Ray Anderson (above left) in a statement provided to the Times, “This all has to go through the normal off-season review process with the Competition Committee, the NFLPA, and the clubs, but we will continue to review hits to the head, including helmet-to-helmet hits, that are currently legal to determine whether more changes should be made. We are constantly looking for ways to increase player safety. Nothing is off the table. As the commissioner reminds us almost every day, we are going to be relentless when it comes to making the game safer.”

Added Atlanta Falcons president and co-chair of the Competition Committee Rich McKay, “People in the league feel it coming and see it coming. I think the league appreciates the idea that it needs to be a leader in this area.”

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