The NFL claims to care about player safety, but that concern was called into question when several helmet-to-helmet hits against Cam Newton went uncalled during Carolina’s league opener against the Broncos on Thursday. Commissioner Roger Goodell addressed the hits and lack on on-field discipline before Monday night’s game between the Steelers and Redskins and even hinted the players may be fined and referees disciplined for swallowing their whistles.
Via: Washington Post
“That’s what the football staff is going through now, to find out what plays — clearly I know we missed at least one in there,” Goodell said at FedEx Field prior to the Washington Redskins’ game Monday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers. “But you’re also concerned about the fact they even happen, even if you don’t miss them from an officiating standpoint. What is it we can do to try to ensure that those hits don’t occur?
“That’s why we have a process. Obviously hopefully they’re flagged on the field. And then if not, discipline can occur. Jon Runyan is in charge of that aspect of it. So he’s reviewing that and I assume he’ll come out with a decision in the next day or so.”
If the league wants to send the message that this type of play is unacceptable, it must start on the field with harsh penalties and the refs enforcing those penalties. We’ll see in the next few days just how serious the league is.