NFL helmet rule

By Dylan Dulberg

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How many concussed multimedia editors does it take to … um … what am I doing here again?

Oh, right. I’m writing to inform you all on the future of the NFL.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (and the second I said that, half of you probably shouted into the sky with anger) recently decided it would be a good idea to put a new rule into place stating that players may no longer use their helmets when attempting to break through a tackle or a blocker.

Let’s back up. Football 101: Among others, there are three things you should always be doing when trying to block someone, trying to get out of a tackle situation, or trying to break through a blocker. First, you need to get low. Second, you need to not rush at the defender, but rush through the defender. And lastly, you need to get behind your shoulder pads to let your protective padding absorb the contact so you can keep moving.

I don’t know if you can picture a football player in your head doing any of these things, but if you can, you will notice one common trait — their helmet is aiming forward.

But now, picture a new scenario. The player must not allow their head to be their first point of contact. Therefore, they must be in almost a standing position as a 250-pound padded monster tackles them. The ball carrier gets taken to the ground with such ease that it might have well as been the point of his to withstand intense physical trauma. You know, like a test dummy.

If you have seen a football game, then you know how much force a good tackle causes. Incidentally, you know more about football than Roger Goodell, having watched one football game. Now, instead of the protective padding on the player absorbing this incredible force, the player’s ribcage can absorb it!

“But wait,” you are saying in my head. “Won’t that cause shockwaves of damage throughout the players’ spines and then their necks and heads? And don’t players often dive into the air to tackle the ball carrier, again causing damage to the players’ essentially unguarded neck and head?”

I would have to respond, “Wow! That’s exactly what I was about to get to!” and give you a high-five. Recently, the biggest controversy in the NFL (excluding Plaxico Burress’ Twitter. Seriously, go look up screenshots, because he probably deleted the tweets by now) is their dismissal of the idea that head injuries and concussions while in game have caused serious problems for players down the road.

Of many enraged players, Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte has been one of the most adamant about how ridiculous this rule change is. So I decided I should go right to the source. As a dedicated journalist, I attempted to contact Roger Goodell for comment. But, that didn’t pan out. So here is what my sarcastic impersonation of Roger Goodell said about the matter:

“I disagree with this article’s assertion. After all, science has proven there is nothing that suggests head injuries in football may lead to brain damage down the road. Science has also proven that if there is a large bookshelf with many books, but only one red book, then pulling on that red book will reveal a secret passageway. Also, science has proven that the sun in fact revolves around the Earth. And –”

At this point, Mr. Goodell passed out due to a concussion that occurred at a previous point in his life. I guess that decrease in brain function is the cause of him thinking this rule change is a good idea.