The NFL concussion protocol is once again in the news as reports say that two players violated the rules during Wild-Card Weekend. ESPN reports that a letter obtained by The Associated Press was sent from the NFL’s head, neck and spine committee chairmen to inform all team doctors and trainers of the violations.
“On two occasions last weekend, and contrary to the advice of the team medical staffs, players who had been diagnosed with a concussion and therefore declared ineligible for play nonetheless refused to leave the sidelines as required by league concussion protocols,” the letter said. “In one case, the player went back onto the field for one play before being removed from the game.”
The letter also gave teams advice when dealing with players that refuse to adhere to the rules.
“If a player refuses to follow your advice and leave the sidelines after being diagnosed with a concussion, we recommend that the head athletic trainer seek assistance from the player’s position coach (or another member of the coaching staff) or from another team official to remove the player from the sidelines as soon as possible,” the letter said.
It is believed that the two players involved are New Orleans Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis and Green Bay Packers tackle David Bakhtiari.