Crisis in NFL

Currently in the NFL, there is a crisis going on that is scaring many players, discouraging parents from letting their kids play, and causing problems later in life to some players. The epidemic that has been sweeping the NFL for decades now, but is now recently getting attention is concussions. The problem: it’s not getting any better.

In 2012 and 2013, teams reported that 306 players suffered 323 concussions. However though, this number is most likely higher than the reported value as players often try to hide symptoms and “tough it out” so they can stay in the game and avoid the NFL’s concussion protocol. This is a huge problem because former players have been experiencing problems doctors are now relating to football.concussion_anatomy-1

For those who don’t know, a concussion is a very serious brain injury caused by a forceful blow to the head; and on some occasions, to the body of an individual that causes the person’s head causing it to move rapidly. This then results in the brain possibly twisting or banging off the         skull, leading to swelling and causing chemical changes in the brain.

As you can see, concussions are very serious and can cause many complications later in life. Ex football players have been linked to a lot of these problems. Many ex football players have been  diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Basically, CTE is a build of this strange protein called Tau. Tau has been linked to disturbing many brain cells in areas that control memories, emotions, and even other functions. Scientists have found alarming concentrations of tau in many autopsies of former NFL players. Tony Dorsett, one of the best running backs of all time has recently been suffering from symptoms like memory loss and depression due to this concussion epidemic. For his story, click here.

It is very evident that concussions are a huge problem in the NFL and that something needs to be done about it. Should the NFL implement stricter concussion policies, implement new rules, and/or conduct research on how to make helmets safer? Probably, but most likely they will do little about it as they have for decades now.


Breslow, Jason M. “FRONTLINE.” PBS. PBS, 19 Sept. 2014. Web. 15 Sept. 2016.


Weinbaum, William. “OTL: Ex-NFL Stars Show CTE Signs.” ESPN, 5 Apr. 2014. Web. 15 Sept. 2016.


“What Is a Concussion?” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for     Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Feb. 2015. Web. 15 Sept. 2016.


4 thoughts on “Crisis in NFL

  1. Wesley Scott Alexander

    I really enjoyed this article, especially because I am a huge football fan and played football all my life. I know that sometimes you can take blows to the head, and the threshold for concussions is much lower than people realize. I was lucky enough to never sustain a diagnosed concussion in my playing career playing both football and lacrosse, but I know there may have been times where I had minor concussions that I either did not realize or did not get diagnosed. Overall, I think this is a topic that will continue to get more and more attention, particularly with its prevalence in the NFL. I actually wrote a blog post about this as well, if you want to check it out you can find it here

  2. Jacob Alexander Loffredo

    I really enjoyed your article dude. I could not agree more that concussions are a huge problem right not across the NFL, but on that note I don’t believe that much more can be done to prevent concussions when you have 300 pound freaks of nature running full speed into each other. Also the point you made about a lot of players hiding their symptoms is very true as well as very dangerous so Here is a awesome article that actually surveyed NFL players asking them if they have played with a concussion that was untreated. All in all football is a very dangerous sport I couldn’t agree with you more but concussions are going to keep happening and there may not be a way to fix that.

  3. Nathan O'brien

    This is very interesting that you brought this topic up. Just like how the tobacco companies hid the evidence that cigarettes cause cancer, I suspect the NFL might have known the seriousness of concussions that players have been experiencing. I agree with you that there are probably many more players out there who have concussions but continue to play. My brother plays college football and has experienced multiple concussions in his career. I worry about his health not only when he gets a concussion but throughout his life. I don’t think we know enough about the long term effects that concussions can have on our health. I was actually going to write a blog regarding concussions and long term cognitive abilities but I think I will save it for next blog period. You should take a look at this meta-analysis studying long term effects of concussions.

    Overall I thought you did a really great job explaining this topic. The chart of the brain and skul is a real eye opener because you can see that the brain bangs up against the side of the skull. That is a really scary sight to see!

  4. Joe Garrett

    I agree that concusions are a huge problem in the NFL and need to be lessened as soon as possible. Football is a violent, physical sport and there are going to be huge hits in every single game. It is just the way the game is played. While football equipment has improved there are still numerous concussions each year in the NFL. I see in the diagram you included that a concussion changes the way the brain functions. Do you know or have a source as to how the brain changes after a concussion? The NFL is introducing a new change to the concussion protocol that will hopefully reduce the amount of concussions. Here is a link to the new change –

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