NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (above) has been scrutinized recently for the rise of concussions in the NFL. He has attempted to reduce concussions in the NFL -- with multiple rule changes and a concussion protocol implemented -- but has been unsuccessful thus far.
This is a statistic that shows the rise of concussions in the NFL. In 2014, there were 115 concussions reported, but in 2015, there were 182 concussions reported. Goodell has tried to prevent concussions, but the concussion rate is only rising.
Quarterback Case Keenum (above) received a big hit in the middle of a game and was unable to get up. The trainers came out to check on him and put him through the concussion protocol. The trainers said he was okay, so he went back in and threw an interception, ultimately losing the game for his team. After the game, he was diagnosed with a serious concussion.
Luke Kuechly (above) is one of the best young linebackers in the NFL. However, his NFL career has been in jeopardy multiple times, with various instances of concussions. After his latest concussion this past season, people believed that he would just retire, but he still wants to play in the NFL.
Chris Borland (above) was also one of the best young linebackers in the NFL. After his surprising rookie year, where he came out of nowhere and was the San Francisco 49ers' best defensive player, he decided to give the NFL another surprise by retiring due to the fear of head trauma. He is one of many NFL players who have decided to retire early, which is another reason that the NFL needs to fix this concussion problem.
The problem the NFL is facing is the rise of concussions. The NFL needs to do something to increase player safety. This concussion problem exists because of the lack of safety in the NFL. There need to be more rules and stricter punishments for illegal hits that could potentially cause a concussion. Though the rate of concussions declined from 2015 to 2016, diagnosed concussions were still at an alarming number. If the NFL does not do something to prevent more concussions, more and more players will begin retiring early.
A possible solution is implementing more rule changes. Though Goodell has implemented 42 rule changes since 2002 to further help the player safety issue, it has not worked. There need to be much stricter punishments for illegal hits. Instead of getting a 15-yard penalty, players should be ejected and teams should be fined.
Another possible solution is having NFL players not wear helmets. Though it is a radical idea, the helmets cause the players to feel as if it is okay to make a tackle headfirst. They know they will not hurt their head by going headfirst, but they are not accounting for the other players. If the NFL players did not wear helmets, then they would not lead with their head as often, and way fewer concussions would occur.