View Full Version : Packers and Steelers Take Sides in Concussion Debate

Atlanta Dan
02-03-2011, 10:52 PM
Imagine The New York Times running another story from the prolific Alan Schwartz on concussions on the eve of the Super Bowl - who could possibly anticipate this might have been coming?:noidea:

The angle this time is the Packers are for safety while the hard-hearted Steelers players apparently are pro-concussion

Two Teams Show Divide in Debate on Safety

Aaron Rodgers sat woozily on the Green Bay Packers’ bench after a hard hit from the Detroit Lions on Dec. 12. Midway through a ghastly loss, with the Packers’ playoff hopes in the balance, the veteran receiver Donald Driver decided that Rodgers, his star quarterback, needed some encouragement.

“I went behind him and told him that this game is just a game,” Driver recalled this week. “Your life is more important than the game.”

A professional player telling another to put his long-term health ahead of the team — a once and, to some, still-heretical idea — thrilled those who are trying to temper the sport’s win-now, regret-later ideology. Neurologists nodded. Parents cheered.

As for the rebuttal in football’s continuing debate, that was gladly delivered this week by none other than the Packers’ opponent in Sunday’s Super Bowl — the Pittsburgh Steelers, whose stars stumped as football’s defiant traditionalists.


Yet another illustration as to how the Steelers are being portrayed as the bad guys on Sunday

tony hipchest
02-03-2011, 11:01 PM
what bullshit!

hines is the one in the forefront asking why the league doesnt make the new "safer' helmets mandantory.

a. rogers is the one rumored to suffer a concussion while waering the new helmet and returning to the NFCC game anyways.

02-03-2011, 11:06 PM
by game-time, the National media will run a story that Troy Polamalu, Rocky Bleier, Myron Cope and Dan Rooney orchestrated the attack on Pearl Harbor, with help from Al-Qaeda and the Klingons, just to portray them as villains

Atlanta Dan
02-03-2011, 11:24 PM
what bullshit!

hines is the one in the forefront asking why the league doesnt make the new "safer' helmets mandantory.

a. rogers is the one rumored to suffer a concussion while waering the new helmet and returning to the NFCC game anyways.

Simplistic story but Schwartz sees a Pulitzer out of this issue - he has written about 125 stories for The Times on this - he has done a lot of good reporting on the league covering the head trauma problem up, but this "Steelers bad/Packers good" story line really pissed me off (although i concede I am getting my game face on as Sunday approaches) :chuckle:

I was going to e-mail Schwartz to give his some quotes to contradict his simplistic story but why bother

This is Hines on the hypocrisy of Goodell & friends in an article that ran this week

They're so hypocritical sometimes. They came out with these new helmets that are supposed to stop concussions. If they care so much about our safety, why don't they mandate that we wear the new ones? If they're so worried about what concussions will do to us after our careers, then guarantee our insurance for life. And if you're going to fine me for a hit, let the money go to veteran guys to help with their medical issues. To say the league really cares? They don't give a **** about concussions. And now they want to add on two extra games? Are you kidding?


The much more balanced New Yorker article on this subject that ran several weeks ago had several insightful quotes from the allegedly pro-concussion Steelers, included these comments from Troy

When I brought up the call for change with the Steelers’ Troy Polamalu, an All-Pro safety who plays with brilliant abandon, and mentioned that the sport’s popularity seemed to be unflagging, he cut me off. “Is that your opinion? That it doesn’t need to be changed?” He later added, “This game’s on the verge of getting out of hand,” and defended the refs, who, he said, were “just trying to protect it.” This from a guy who, a few weeks earlier, had complained that there was “a paranoia that is unneeded,” and that if people wanted to watch soccer they could and would.

“In the past, it was a style of ball that was three yards and a cloud of dust, so you didn’t see too many of these big hits, because there wasn’t so much space between players,” Polamalu said. “I mean, with the passing game now, you get four-wide-receiver sets, sometimes five-wide-receiver sets. You get guys coming across the middle, you get zone coverages. You know, there’s more space between these big hits, so there’s more opportunity for these big hits.”

He has had at least seven concussions. “Honestly, it hurts both players, you know, and, whenever you see those big hits, it’s not just offensive guys lying on the ground,”


And as far as the noble Packers, wasn't it amazing Rodgers was able to go back into the NFC championship game, when Peppers laid him out and the noble Mr. Driver apparently did not urge him to sit, when the stakes were making the Super Bowl - this article certainly raises the issue that something was up

Vital Signs: Conspiracy of silence over possible Rodgers concussion?

And yet for all the consciousness-raising lately about the dangers of concussions in football, hardly anybody seems to be talking about the possibility that our star quarterback suffered another one Sunday. I mean, those Fox announcers don't stop yakking, but their silence on this was deafening. Nobody on the Green Bay coaching and medical staff on the sidelines called Rodgers over for a check-up, either, at least that we could see, and there was little in the papers about the whole thing Monday.

I called Dustin Fink, an athletic trainer from central Illinois who writes theconcussionblog.com, to ask him if he noticed anything weird about Rodgers' behavior after that hit Sunday. Fink, who coaches high school football, told me he sure did. "If this had happened to one of my players on Friday night I would have pulled him off the field, just based on his gaze," Fink says. "We call it ‘the gaze' when we see somebody concussed. It's like they're looking right through you. Their eyes don't look like they're as focused."


Too bad Schwartz did not write a more balanced article on a serious subject but he, or his editors, clearly had an agenda