Monday, 5 March 2012

Grappling on the gridiron

The National Football League is investigating allegations that New Orleans Saints defensive players set up a so-called bounty programme that paid them for injuring opponents.

There's nothing wrong with big hits, either in American football or rugby league.  The difference is the injuries they cause.  Because linemen in American football don't have to run with the ball, there's more incentive for them to bulk up, either legally or illegally. And the amount of protective gear American football players wear conversely seems to lead to more injury.  Padded up players are more reckless in tackles and collision with a metal helmet is far more likely to cause concussion than a clash of heads.

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