It is perhaps not surprising that the amount of concussion coverage, NFL lawsuits, and suicides among former football players have led to a change in the way that parents perceive football. Parents see the connection between concussions and football, and are having to weigh the pros and cons of letting their children take on that risk.
According to an August online public opinion survey of over 1,000 people from “Outside the Lines”, ESPN Research and the Global Strategy Group, 57% of parents said that the recent stories about concussions in football make them less likely to allow their children to play in youth leagues.
The survey also asked questions about perception of injuries, particularly concussions, in the NFL, and how and if those perceptions applied to all levels of the sports — particularly to parents of children under 15. About 66% said that concussions were a serious issue for football.
Also in the survey, 18% of people said they were less likely to follow football because of the concussion issues and 94% think concussions are a serious problem in the NFL.
In other surveys, 70% of fans say they side with the former players against the NFL. Some argue that if they’d had all the information, they would have played differently. The NFL seems to know that this is the sentiment, and Roger Goodell has made a strong push in recent years to emphasizes safety and change some of the rules. Last year, after a rule change, there was a 12.5% drop in concussions. The NFL also supports the Lystedt law which mandates young athletes suspected of concussion be removed from play or practice until cleared by a medical professional.
Fans don’t want the game fundamentals to change, but increasing the safety of the game as it’s played now has a great deal of support. High-tech helmets, strong penalties for illegal hits, and better monitoring are all on the table. But shortening the season, removing kickoffs, and banning tackling are all very much off the table.
Minimum age for tackle football, from ESPN:
An ESPN survey asked respondents: In your opinion, what should the minimum age requirement be for kids to play full contact football?
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Personal Injury Laws Can Help
If your child has received a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or concussion because of negligence on the part of the school or athletic league, you may have a personal injury case. The attorneys at Strom Law, LLC can help you. We offer free consultations to discuss the facts of your case, so contact us today. 803.252.4800.