Latest on Tua Tagovailoa concussion controversy: Dolphins QB’s head trauma fiasco ignites dispute between NFL-NFLPA

The NFL and NFLPA collaborate well in the majority of circumstances. However, two questions have arisen as a result of the Tagovailoa’s probe since the catastrophe of September 25th. Is the current protocol being followed? Second, will the current practices be altered?

During the Dolphins’ game against the Cincinnati Bengals, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered a concussion. When Tagovailoa was given the go-ahead to play against the Bengals by the medical staff, it was clear that the two sides couldn’t agree on whether the injury protocol had been adhered to. NFLPA Executive Committee member Richard Sherman stated during the Colts-Broncos pregame that the union believed the protocols were not followed, but the league believes otherwise.

NFL NFLPA dispute

Last weekend, the NFL and NFLPA released a joint statement regarding potential procedure adjustments that strongly implied agreed revisions would be put into effect. It was widely reported and believed that the new strategy would automatically reject players with “gross motor instability” without considering any other factors.

The modifications were planned to be implemented in Week 5, but they were not implemented in time for the first weekend game in Denver.

The NFLPA issued this statement last Friday: “Our union has agreed to change the concussion protocols to protect players from returning to play in the case of any similar incident to what we saw on September 25. We would like these changes to go into effect before this weekend’s game to immediately protect the players and hope the NFL accepts the change before then.”

The league gave a supporting statement saying “As we have discussed with the NFLPA, we agree that changes to the joint NFL-NFLPA protocols are necessary to further enhance player safety. We have already spoken to members of the NFL Head, Neck, and Spine Committee and the leadership of the Unaffiliated Neurotrauma Consultants and Independent Certified Athletic Trainers who serve as spotters to discuss these likely changes.” Hopefully we will see these protocols implemented soon.

Mehzabeen Murshed

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