Controversy in the NFL: a player was hospitalized after suffering two blows in a few days and opened the debate on concussions

These are turbulent hours in the National Football League (NFL)the American Football League, because the way this organization handles cases of concussion. a player named Tua Tagovailoawho plays quarterback in the Miami Dolphinssuffered two strokes in a span of five days and that has sparked criticism from the players’ union (NFLPA).

Tagovailoa He suffered a concussion when he hit his head on the floor during the fall from 27-15 that the dolphins suffered on Thursday before Cincinnati Bengals. His head hit the ground hard after being rammed by a rival, for which he had to be removed on a stretcher, taken to a hospital and subjected to a series of medical tests to rule out serious injuries.

As revealed Mike McDanielhead coach of the Miami franchise, the quarterback of 24 years He had a headache Thursday night and Friday morning. The results of the MRI are still unknown, according to McDanielwould be done as “extra precaution” plus CT scans and X-rays taken the night before.

Tua Tagovailoa was knocked down by Josh Tupou and his head hit the ground hard (Photo: USA TODAY Sports) (Kareem Elgazzar/)

In the play in question, Tagovailoa was captured by Josh Topou, defensive back for the Bengals, and ended up on the ground hitting his head. In the images, he is seen adopting an unnatural posture, known as “fencing reflex”, with the fingers of the hands clenched and paralyzed in front of his face. He was lying on the ground for more than seven minutes before being taken away by ambulance to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.

And although the dolphins reported that Tua Tagovailoa was conscious and had mobility in all limbs, there was a number of criticisms for allowing him to play the match, as five days earlier he had suffered an alarming incident in the victory by 21-19 in front of the buffalo bills.

That day, the quarterback he also hit his head on the grass and was removed from the field but, to everyone’s surprise, was allowed to return to the game despite appearing dazed and unsteady on his feet. The dolphins They denied he had a concussion and insist it was a back and ankle injury, a diagnosis met with great skepticism among experts and the league’s players’ union.

JC Tretterpresident of the union (NFLP), opened an investigation into the evaluation of Tua Tagovailoa and called for changes in prevention protocols. “We are all outraged by what we have seen in recent days and we fear for the safety of one of our brothers. What everyone saw on both Sunday and Thursday were symptoms for withdrawal, within our protocols”, Tretter stressed.

The protocols of NFL identify certain symptoms as evidence of a concussion, which should lead to the immediate removal of the player from the field. Among them are the loss of consciousness, confusion, amnesia, and motor instability. As part of the regulations, there are neurotrauma specialists on the sidelines of the playing fields to look for possible signs of concussion in players when they are hit.

However, the diagnosis and the final decision on the return of a hit player to the field rests exclusively with the medical chief of each team. The dolphins insisted that a broad group of medical experts established that Tagovailoa he had not suffered a head injury on Sunday, so he returned to play a few days later. “We have a 100% conviction in our process. This is an organization that favors the players”assured the coach Mike McDaniel.

Tua Tagovailoa had to be removed on a stretcher from the game between the Miami Dolphins and the Cincinnati Bengals (Photo: USA TODAY Sports)
Tua Tagovailoa had to be removed on a stretcher from the game between the Miami Dolphins and the Cincinnati Bengals (Photo: USA TODAY Sports) (Kareem Elgazzar/)

Allen Sillsmedical chief of the NFLsaid Friday that they were gathering information as part of an investigation into the handling of the injury from Tagovailoa. “The purpose of that review is to make sure the protocol was followed. There are very serious consequences if it is determined that protocol was not followed”, declared sills to the chain NFL Network.

In 2015, the NFL agreed to pay some $1 billion to settle thousands of lawsuits from former players with neurological problems. His protocol has evolved remarkably from the days when players were just given salts to sniff and get back in the game, though both the league and the players’ union still have short circuits when it comes to traumatic brain injury.

Chris Nowinskywho created the Concussion Legacy Foundation and played football at Harvard, considers that Tagovailoa he suffered a concussion in the game against the Bills and should not have played days later in Cincinnati. “Tua showed five different signs of shock. This should have ended his season in my opinion. And it just shows the lack of care for him as a human being.”Nowinski said in dialogue with AP.


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