After reviewing the NFL’s training video regarding the enforcement of the league’s more stringent illegal hitting policy [WATCH the NFL Video on illegal hits in football], I can see why there is such a backlash amongst players, defensive players and punters in particular.
Don’t get me wrong. There are far too many concussions in the NFL, and, as we’re learning, not surprisingly, a blunt-force trauma to the head can have long-lasting, debilitating effects on a human being. Traumatic brain injury is nothing to mess around with. Having suffered a concussion myself, I have some idea of what the short-term effects are, at the very least.
Still, at the speed with which the game is played these days, you can understand the skepticism the players have with being able to make split-second decisions about how and whether to hit an opposing player. If you can’t lead with your head, shoulder or forearm–as Chris Kluwe tweeted out–what’s left? Will this rule change usher in the Chest Bump Era?
Is it time to re-sign Dwayne Rudd?
The problem is not so much the technique players are using to hit other players, it’s that the players themselves are much more massive and much faster than they ever have been. A
200 260 (is what I meant) pound man is not supposed to be able to run a 4.4 forty. You combine that much mass and that much velocity and you’re bound to have problems.
Here’s what the Cheeseheads are talking about:
- Cheesehead TV says rookie defensive end Mike Neal and linebacker Brady Poppinga are likely done for the season
- VIDEO: Kareem Copeland and Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press Gazette preview the game
- Mike Spofford of Packers.com says B.J. Raji is ready for Adrian Peterson
- Gary D’Amato of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel details Packers punter Tim Masthay‘s troubles
- VIDEO: NFL Network playbook looks at the matchup
- M.J. Kasprzak of Packer Chatters picks the Vikings by 1
- Packernet wonders how their team can turn it around
- Jason Wilde of ESPN Milwaukee brings up The Blueprint
- The ACME Packing Company previews the game
VARIATION ON A THEME
Earlier this month I talked about how Green Bay Packers reporters seemingly use the phrase “chose his words deliberately but diplomatically” whenever they quote quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
The practice appears to be bleeding over the border because now I see a variation on the theme being used amongst our own Vikings beat writers. Pioneer Press‘ Brian Murphy characterized Rodgers’ choice of words as “carefully measured” when discussing his relationship with Brett Favre (which, by the way, is a nice peek into the two players’ relationship…or lack thereof).
What is it about Rodgers that compels reporters so? Is it the timbre of his voice that gives the impression of diplomacy? Is he simply walking on eggshells all the time?
Todd Bouman will start for the Jacksonville Jaguars tomorrow. You remember Todd Bouman, don’t you? Mike Tice‘s backup, backup quarterback? Your last memory of him is of a kid in his mid-to late-twenties with a bit of a panicked look on his face as he attempted to direct the Vikings offense.
Being Mike Tice’s quarterback, he, of course, eventually landed on the squad of the Jacksonville Jaguars, where Tice was a coach. Bouman will start for the Jaguars on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs. He is 38 years old. And he ain’t no Brett Favre.
The number of sacks the Chicago Bears have given up. It’s the most in the league. Who is the Bears offensive line coach? None other than Mike Tice.