Head Butts are illegal because they cause concussions. Vontaze Burfict head-butted Pittsburgh Steeler Antonio Brown in Cincinnati yesterday and incredibly Deon Sanders blamed racism by the press according to Rush’s comments today. The Chicago Tribune’s Steve Rosenbloom wrote: “…….the lame attempts by the NFL to claim it is making the game safer is actually making the game more confusing.
“The NFL is legislating the football out of football. It has been doing that for a while and it will continue to put bandaids on places where bandaids don’t work.”
Rosenfield doesn’t get it. Neither does Burfict. In defense of Burfict, he is unable to play the game unless he plays dirty. He’s been a dirty player, a player who purposely defies the rules to hurt people since his college days and most likely before that. Dirty football is worse than unsportsmanlike, it shows a criminal, rule-breaking tendency which will likely lead one day to an arrest but in Burfict’s case it’s probably because he wants to hurt people. He should be suspended permanently from the NFL.
What should the NFL do? First it should evolve the designs of the helmets. Cars can crash at high speeds while keeping the occupants safe or at least safer than the cars of the 1960’s. Air bags cannot react fast enough to keep a players skull safe but there are plenty of design alternatives. A new design, the Zero1 by a new company, Vicis, is better than the present plastic brain bowls made by market leaders Rawlings and Riddell but more designs are needed. Even the Vicis can and will be improved as the crushable helmet evolves but there is a limit. The force to the head must be absorbed by the neck and vertebrae. There’s a limit to muscle and sinews. What that is needs even more research but for now the news is promising as more people get involved with better helmets.
Bottom line? Our kids safety comes first and that drives sportsmanlike conduct as well as helmet design. Vontaze Burfict showed how far the sport has devolved. We need to take it in the other direction and make it better.