Oh Boy! Another NFL Concussion Study

At this point, everyone knows the NFL’s standard approach to controlling the media and the dialog about all-things-football. It was last September when the League made that huge announcement on their $100 million partnership with the CDC to study concussions just as football season was starting. Well, it’s football season again – time to make a new announcement!

We also know that when things don’t go their way, it’s time to throw more money at something else until you get the results you want. And now with more confirmed statistics emerging on the overwhelming presence of CTE in retired players’ brains (post-mortem now), it’s time for another distraction.

In an earlier post about the League’s dissatisfaction with the results so far with that $100 million pledge to fund concussion studies with the CDC (click HERE to read that post), you may recall their original promise to uphold the importance of an objective hands-off approach. Well, that didn’t last very long. With over $40 million remaining of their $100 million pledge, the League tried to step in and have one of the neurologists removed from the study. When that didn’t go their way, they immediately withdrew their commitment for the balance of the study. (Sounds like a lot of your contracts too, doesn’t it? If you don’t collect your money up front, you’re probably going to get screwed).

So what’s their solution? Another study, of course! Totally objective too. Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru provide details on the League’s new ground-breaking concussion study.

 

NFL retakes control of brain research as touted alliance ends

LONDON — Since announcing a $100 million commitment to concussion research last year, the NFL has funded just one study examining chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, the brain disease that has shaken pro football. But that study isn’t focused on football players.

It’s focused on jockeys.

The project, run out of a four-story brick building in northwest London, aims to find out why high concussion rates in horse racing don’t translate into “deteriorating brain function in later life,” a question that many scientists believe has little to do with football. The study is led by an Australian researcher who once described American coverage of CTE as “carry-on and hoo-hah” and a British doctor whose concussion presentations sometimes have included flippant jokes and video of tumbling jockeys set to slapstick music. At one presentation, the widow of a CTE victim, a former British soccer star, was so offended she stormed out of the room.

You can read the full article on ESPN – click HERE.

As a closing observation from an outsider looking at football with a different view, I want to ask everyone a question that just seems obvious to me:

If the NFL uses its wealth and influence to try and change the outcome of scientific studies, why would anyone not believe that these same people are using their money and control to influence the outcome of their games?

P.S. – And yes. My recovery from that stroke a month ago is going well. Therapists are telling me that I may have full recovery in a couple of months. So I’m back!

Thanks to all for sending good wishes and prayers!


Comments

Oh Boy! Another NFL Concussion Study — 1 Comment

  1. Don Brady Pointing

    1- The poem/song I penned 4 years ago tragically continues to apply –

    Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Football Players

    Below is an excerpt…

    Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be football players
    Players like bone-crushing tackles and the shining spotlight
    Yet growing concern for concussions gives some a fright
    As prematurely aging brains make CTE a scary sight

    Though pseudo critics hastily bash Omalu and McKee’s pioneer CTE findings
    The doctors’ respective research bears close minding
    Seems their critics merely manufacture false doubt – to attempt purging
    With hopes to crush the credible brain injury evidence emerging.

    [copyright Don Brady< PhD, PsyD 2013-14]

    2- The proposed jockey study lacks horse sense.

    …as the study’s subjects are not engaged in comparable football type activities, jockeys and horses don’t violently crash into each other 40 – 60 times in a single horse race.

    An early 2017 NY Times excerpt follows re the significant number of hits a football player reportedly receives in a single game:

    “…In this chart, we show the G-force data from just 10 of the 62 hits this offensive lineman accrued in a single game. The average G-force, 25.8, is roughly equivalent to what we would see if the offensive lineman crashed his car into a wall going about 30 mph

    “…And remember: that was 62 times in a single game.”

    The link to the complete article:

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/01/09/sports/football/what-happened-within-this-players-skull-football-concussions.html?r=0

    Peace.

    Don Brady, PhD, PsyD
    Licensed Clinical Psychologist

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