Coaches and Players Prove They Don't Consider Safety

By Ryan Derenbecker
January 08, 2013 3:12 pm
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RG3By now, everyone who follows the NFL knows that Robert Griffin III has tears in his ACL and LCL.

And that Mike Shanahan has tried to pin the blame on everyone besides the waterboy for rushing Griffin back and leaving him in the game against Seattle when he was obviously not performing at a high level. 

Griffin has also admitted he would have refused to leave the game had Shanahan tried to pull him out.

Now Griffin could be out for a year and might not return to form for another two years (or maybe ever).

Having a warrior mentality and a powerful drive to win is exactly why these players and coaches have reached the NFL, but they need to exercise reasonable caution, or risk wasting high draft picks and big contracts. 

Bruises and stingers can be ignored, but a serious sprain that a team doctor feels skittish about should not be ignored.

The recent controversy over the long-term effects of concussions boils down to this same lack of caution. It started with defensive players moving away from proper tackling (which protects both players involved in the tackle), but grew into a lawsuit and massive media debate. 

The players need to protect themselves and their opponents from long-term injury, and the coaches need to consider long-term ramifications for their team. 

Risking player health hurts franchises, wasting draft picks, cap space, and large amounts of revenue. Coaching jobs won't stay secure when using only backup-caliber quarterbacks - Kansas City and Arizona are proof of that.

It's good to be a warrior, but all you players and coaches, listen to your doctors.

The author sends his condolences to Griffin and Redskins fans everywhere. He has been dreading facing RGIII for the next 10-15 years, but does not wish serious injury on anyone. He can be found on Facebook or Twitter via his author page.

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20 months ago
Thanks for the article, Ryan.

I agree with all you say, except the assumption that Coach Shanahan has tried to pin blame on anybody. I've heard his statements after and I didn't hear that at all.

Though I'm not a fan of this particular coach, if you truely believe you heard him trying to pin blame on anybody, you heard something I did not.

The doctor in question told the press he was concerned about the player being in the game only after the incident occured. According to the doctor and the coaching staff, he cleared the player to play. Once a player has been cleared medically, the coach has every right to assume he can play. That's why the doctor gets paid to be there.

No sensible coach would knowingly risk losing a QB of this caliber if they knew he was injured beforehand. In your own words you say a coach is risking his own job if the guy gets injured.

Your article says both things but common sense says it can't be both ways.

It's football. It is not unusual to see guys limp away from a play 3 or 4 times in a game because they got stung. The only coaching decision that may be debatable here is whether or not the staff recognized the player was not helping the team any longer. Even that has to be tempered by the fact it comes now, as a result of 20/20 hindsight.

Thanks again for the read.

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