And about all that's left to enjoy at the stadium games is the tailgating.
Maybe it's an occupational hazard having worked on football helmet injury cases, but it is simply too difficult to listen to all that smacking around and wonder which neck will be broken or which brain will be injured with the plethora of inferior helmets on the field. The helmet is supposed to be designed to protect the neck as well as the head. In many cases, helmets worn by NFL players are archaic - to say the least - and there is little oversight or help for the players. “This is our livelihood,” Giants quarterback Eli Manning said. “It’s one of the biggest decisions we make.”
As I've written previously, the NFL is on notice about the self-regulating National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment ("NOCSAE), inferior helmets, concussions, head injuries, and neck injuries.
"Despite Risks, NFL Leaves Helmet Choices in Players' Hands" is today's latest reminder from Sam Borden writing for the NYimes. Excerpt.
"Even as head injuries have become a major concern, the N.F.L. has neither mandated nor officially recommended the helmet models that have tested as the top performers in protecting against collisions believed to be linked to concussions. Some players choose a helmet based on how it looks on television, or they simply wear the brand they have been using their whole career, even if its technology is antiquated. As a consequence, despite lawsuits related to head injuries and the sport’s ever-increasing speed and violence, some players are using helmets that appear to place them at greater risk.
One of the issues the NFL faces might be its long-term partnership with Riddell. Click here to read more.
You may also be interested in reading A. O. Scott's review of "Head Games" a just-released documentary by Steve James focusing on football, hockey and women's soccer and "the widespread incidence of head injuries that threaten the well-being of competitors at every level, from youth leagues to the pros."