By Danny Cox
The NFL has been about safety for the past few years, and countless injuries have been the reason. Concussions have become an almost constant problem for the league, and they are looking for matters to help prevent them from happening completely. In order to do that though, the cooperation of players, staff, league personnel, and more is needed.
One big problem is that they may forget just how competitive some of the players are.
Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher said on Thursday that he would lie and say whatever was necessary in order to cover up a concussion. With Bears quarterback Jay Cutler possibly sitting out this week’s game with a concussion, it made for interesting comments from the veteran defensive player.
Only, this wasn’t the first time he has said this. Urlacher was asked if he stood by his comments from January in which he said he would try to cover up a concussion if he thought he had one.
“Yeah,” he replied. “There’s a point in every game when you get hit and you’re a little woozy,” Urlacher said. “Not every game, but mostly every game you hit someone and you’re like, ‘Whoa, that was a good one.’ I don’t know how you can lie these days with all the crap they have to see who’s concussed and who’s not. I don’t know how they can tell in the first place.”
Back in January, Urlacher stated that he would say something is wrong with his knee or toe if he thought he had a concussion. This way, he could come out of the game for a few plays to gather his bearings and not have to miss the remainder.
With a lot of focus being on concussions and the safety of the heads of players, Urlacher did state that he wished the NFL would do more about the safety of players’ knees.
“I think they shouldn’t allow cut blocks because our knees are important to us too,” Urlacher said. “I know concussions are a big deal, too. But I think knee cut blocks are a big deal, but that seems to be OK with the NFL. So they’re not too concerned about safety.”
The Bears vicious linebacker knows that the concern the NFL has for players’ long-term health is sincere and genuine. Still though, he’d like the league to take a much more aggressive stance toward players sustaining serious knee injuries. Urlacher specifically pinpoints injuries that happen due to questionable or illegal blocks.
“Immediately they’re not concerned about your knees, your ankles or anything like that,” Urlacher said. “I think that should be an issue. Concussions are taking care of themselves. It’s a big deal now to everyone because of all the older players coming back and saying they’re all messed up now. That’s definitely an issue, but I think the cut block seems to be an issue as well.”
While the Bears Urlacher wasn’t trying to make light of concussions, he did seem to take a different stance altogether on concussions versus knee injuries.
According to the Urlacher, a concussion would put a player on the shelf for a couple games and then be able to get back on the field. A serious knee injury could put a player out for the rest of the season.
His point makes a lot of sense, and both injuries could be incredibly tragic depending on their severity. Dealing with a knee or dealing with the mind though, they are on two totally different planets and need to be treated as such.
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Danny Cox knows a little something about the NFL, whether it means letting you know what penalty will come from the flag just thrown on the field or quickly spouting off who the Chicago Bears drafted in the first round of the 1987 draft (Jim Harbaugh). He plans on bringing you the best news, previews, recaps, and anything else that may come along with the exciting world of the National Football League. His work can be found on Examiner.com.