The Rutgers player paralyzed video is obviously hard to watch. Yet the Rutgers player paralyzed video, and the timing of it, could prove to be a turning point beyond college football. Before this weekend, the debate over hard hits, the damage they cause, and how the game handles them wasn’t the big issue of the moment. But because there were so many devastating hits and injuries on Sunday, the NFL is now taking greater action. Yet if not for the video of the Rutgers player, perhaps there wouldn’t be such a speedy call to action.
The tragedy of Eric LeGrand was already a big story before Sunday’s NFL games. LeGrand was the first player this weekend to show what a hard hit to the head could do. After he went in head-first against the shoulder of an Army kick returner, he was left unable to get up – perhaps permanently.
Yet the video may not be the most graphic one of the weekend in football. A day later, multiple bone-chilling hits took place throughout the NFL, leaving several players unable to get up for some time. But although the hits looked terrible, all of the victims left with no worse than a concussion.
It is an ominous thing when a concussion is the best-case scenario for incidents like this. But concussions have become so frequent, some fear that it’s only a matter of time before someone ends up like LeGrand. Therefore, the NFL is now taking action, and will suspend anyone who commits an especially “devastating” tackle – whether it’s helmet-to-helmet or not.
There is already debate over whether the NFL is overreaching, and is going too far to prevent something that perhaps can’t be avoided. Perhaps if the video of LeGrand was out on any other weekend, they might not have done this. But then again, they may be acting out because of the hard NFL hits, instead of the one in college football.
Nevertheless, the timing is too coincidental to brush aside. LeGrand’s paralysis isn’t even a new thing in college football, after Penn State’s Adam Taliaferro suffered a similar fate 10 years ago. Yet Taliaferro was miraculously able to walk again, and LeGrand could do the same someday.
However, the last time the NFL saw a case like that, Darryl Stingley was not able to walk again. It may be sheer luck that it hasn’t happened again in over 30 years. But with examples like the Rutgers player and the scary hits on Sunday afternoon, the NFL does not want to press its luck further.
Eric LeGrand suffered the worst of what college football has to offer. Yet, by sheer tragic accident, he may have played a part in helping the NFL avoid a similar situation – or just in delaying the inevitable further.
YouTube- “Eric LeGrand Tackle Army Vs Rutgers 2010”