I wonder to what extent the National Football League has really changed its stance on concussions.
The league, long criticized for downplaying and denying the long-term damage of of concussions, is making a poster for team locker rooms that will spell out rather frankly the dangers of brain injury, according to The New York Times.
The paper published a picture of the league’s new poster with the story it published Tuesday, which was headlined “NFL Asserts Greater Risks of Head Injury.”
The poster, which The Times says will also be given to players in a brochure form, boldly notes the connection of concussions to depression and the early onset of dementia. It also warns that repeated concussions “can change your life and your family’s life forever,” according to The Times.
And the poster also has photos depicting kids playing sports, reminding the pro players that “other athletes are watching.”
The idea of creating the new poster comes from the NFL’s new head, neck and spine medical committee, with the support of league commissioner Roger Goodell, The Times reported. And the text was written by the medical committee along with the players’ union and the Centers for Disease Control.
But Times reporter Alan Schwartz also noted that the NFL is still giving former players who have symptoms of early-onset dementia a hard time over disability payments. The older players have been deemed ineligible for the richer disability payments that players with on-field injuries receive.