SportsProf

(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Is the End of Big-Time Football Upon Us?

This story, of former Eagles' fullback, Kevin Turner, is chilling.

As is this one, about the former Penn football star, Owen Thomas, who took his own life earlier this year.

As was the video of Eagles' middle linebacker Stewart Bradley, who stumbled around Lincoln Financial Field like a drunken sailor after a hit.

As are the many stories about former NFL players with all sorts of orthopedic and neurological problems.

Teddy Roosevelt almost banned football at the turn of the twentieth century because of the violence of the game (then, players were getting killed). Rules changed, and did equipment. The NFL had better get atop of, and ahead of, this issue fast. The statistics don't seem to be getting any better, and before there is too large a landscape scattered with the bodies and souls of guys who gave their all for others' enjoyment, only not to be functional in their thirties, forties and fifties, changes -- in terms of equipment, rules for players coming back from injuries, and rules within the game -- need to be made.

Because as we know with a fickle electorate, public opinion can turn on anyone and anything, including this favorite sport, quickly and decisively.

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