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Austin Collie on concussion concerns: I try to ignore it

Austin Collie AP

No topic dominated the headlines during the 2010 NFL season like concussions, and no player was the subject of more scrutiny than Colts receiver Austin Collie, who had to leave the last three games he played because of concussions.

But that doesn’t mean Collie is worried about how concussions could affect him going forward.

“I think I have kind of put that behind me,” Collie said on KHTK, via SportsRadioInterviews.com. “I don’t like to dwell on it too much just because it can affect your play going across the middle and catching another ball. You don’t want things like that popping up in the back of your mind. So I try to ignore any thought I do have of it. I don’t want to watch it. People want to show me or want to ask how I felt during that time. I just kind of brush it aside because it is one of those things that it is in the past and it’s unfortunate. I was unlucky, but I’m just looking forward to this next season and getting on with it.”

The 25-year-old Collie says he doesn’t give much thought to whether brain injuries he suffers on the field now could affect him when he’s 35 or 55 or 75.

“I’ve known players who play with nine or ten concussions and who have lived on to have successful careers and haven’t had any symptoms later on in life, so again everyone is different,” Collie said. “Everyone handles each injury different and hopefully down the road it’ll be perfectly fine.”

Collie’s attitude of wanting to ignore his concussions and hoping he’ll be fine in the future is the attitude we usually hear football players express:  Football players just want to play football, not worry about concussions.  Which is all the more reason that the NFL needs to worry about concussions.

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21 Responses to “Austin Collie on concussion concerns: I try to ignore it”
  1. dbellina says: Jul 7, 2011 10:26 AM

    Yeah, I find the best solution to all of life’s problems is just ignoring them.

  2. benh999 says: Jul 7, 2011 10:30 AM

    The good news is that the more concussions he suffers, the easier it will be to ignore them.

  3. winkeroni says: Jul 7, 2011 10:38 AM

    Maybe Jerry Rice or Isaac Bruce could offer some advice to Autin Collie on how not to get hit hard. Those guys had a good sense of who was around them and didn’t put themselves into positions to be crushed.

  4. pitch87mph says: Jul 7, 2011 10:46 AM

    Listen, I have no problem with the NFL doing all it can to prevent concussions with reasonable rules, better technology (helmets), etc. It’s good public relations–particularly for the long-term. No one wants to see its past superstars walking around like Muhammad Ali. But the bottom line is that these guys are paid a LOT of money. It’s called an occupational hazard. And just like in the “regular” economy, people are typically compensated for the additional risk (relative to similar skilled jobs with lower risk). The NFL is no different. Players are substantially compensated–both in terms of actual $$s, access to resources/technology/health care, etc. If they are willing to accept the risk, then we have no business telling them what to do. We can “vote” based on how much we spend on the NFL, etc. But arbitrary regulation based on nothing more than “do-gooder” sentiments based on a complete rejection of reality is NOT the way to go.

  5. killxswitch says: Jul 7, 2011 10:52 AM

    I will never understand why the NFL doesn’t standardize the helmets that have proven to be more “anti-concussion” than the official Riddell helmet. Hopefully Collie gets one of those before football starts up again. He was having a hell of a year before he got hurt.

  6. goawayeverybody says: Jul 7, 2011 11:04 AM

    Austin Collie will be an absolute beast this year. 1,200+ yards and 7+ touchdowns. You heard it here first.

  7. philwauke says: Jul 7, 2011 11:08 AM

    And not answer.

  8. terripet says: Jul 7, 2011 11:20 AM

    this is one guy no one can cover in the slot.

  9. stixzidinia says: Jul 7, 2011 11:24 AM

    This guy is crazy. Concussions are no joke. He’s lost the ability to make a rational decision, obviously, when he’s reaching for cases of guys suffering “9 or 10 concussions” to use as a baseline for his decision. And chances are those guys he supposedly knows haven’t gotten far enough along down the line in life to show the symptoms of CTE yet. Concussions are brain trauma and the damage doesn’t magically disappear. If this guy comes back and sufferes another one he’ll probably be dead before age 50. Hope it was worth it to be an expendable role player in the NFL.

  10. redskinspike says: Jul 7, 2011 11:27 AM

    “Collie’s attitude of wanting to ignore his concussions and hoping he’ll be fine in the future is the attitude we usually hear football players express: Football players just want to play football, not worry about concussions. Which is all the more reason that the NFL needs to worry about concussions.”

    Maybe what he’s saying is that he doesn’t want the concussions impact his play on the field. I.e. he doesn’t want to shy away from making a catch in traffic because he’s had concussions before.

  11. expatpatfan says: Jul 7, 2011 11:32 AM

    This will not end well.

  12. nekelund says: Jul 7, 2011 11:42 AM

    I think that Collie is just saying what the truth of the matter is: no matter how much the NFL does to try and enhance player safety, concussions will take place. While it is important to recognize the potential harm of concussions and to ensure that players do not return to the field until all concussion symptoms have resolved, it is important to note that the vast majority of former NFL players do not, to our knowledge, go on to suffer long-term mental or physical disability as a result of concussions.

    It is important for the league, in concert with the players, to develop a strategy to minimize concussions and limit shots to the head on the field. However, the possibility of long-term severe brain injury, while significant, remains relatively small. Players need to know the risks and make an informed choice, as Collie seems to have done here.

  13. schmitty2 says: Jul 7, 2011 12:12 PM

    Foe the sake of this kid’s health the Colts might want to consider moving him to the outside and trying Garcon or Blair White in the slot

  14. sev3n5 says: Jul 7, 2011 12:28 PM

    Austin better hope Manning isn’t seeing ghosts on the field again this year, a couple of those hits were Manning’s fault and not Collie’s. Either way, I don’t see this guy’s career ending well.

  15. nagihcimwolves50 says: Jul 7, 2011 12:40 PM

    Getting hit in the head is part of the game of football. You play long enough it is going to happen and isn’t necessarily a malicious hit from a safety trying to end a career. Players should all wear mouthpiece to prevent concussions as well. NFL not requiring mouthpieces is hypocritical as usual.

  16. ctiggs says: Jul 7, 2011 1:38 PM

    AKA he cant remember

  17. wso2hi says: Jul 7, 2011 1:54 PM

    Collie’s injury situation last season was one of the most regrettable story lines last year. He’s one brave guy, and I wish him the best. He’s a true Colt receiver, especially ever since Harrison retired. In the same spirit, I would really like to see Collie keep playing without risking another concussion, AND REALLY love to see Randy Moss join the WR corp. in hopes that the sheer gift of getting to catch passes from the other first Ballot HOF QB, Mr. Manning, would light the fuse that Moss seems to really thrive on, and give the Colts the same kind of elite performance that he gave Brady and the Pats. I really think he’s got one more season left, especially with Peyton’s passing style that uses more touch and drops in from a higher trajectory than Brady’s more line drive throwing style. And I really believe Moss could give the exact same route tree that Harrison gave Manning, only a foot higher! And joining Wayne, Clark and Co.,….I would fully expect the media to go nuts over this line up!

  18. lifelongbrownsfan says: Jul 7, 2011 2:03 PM

    Maybe Jerry Rice or Isaac Bruce could offer some advice to Autin Collie on how not to get hit hard. Those guys had a good sense of who was around them and didn’t put themselves into positions to be crushed.

    *****************************

    Are you kidding me?!? Rice and Bruce were completely different receivers than Collie. Rice and Bruce were both No. 1s, running posts and deep go-routes in their high-powered air attacks. Neither of them suffered the kind of brutal attacks that come from running crossing routes – as typical No.2s and 3s – the possession receivers like Collie or Wes Welker (a couple years ago, not so much now), former Bills receiver Don Beebe or former Browns receiver Brian Brennan routinely run/ran.

    I don’t know Rice or Bruce on a personal level, but I imagine their advice would go something like “man, don’t run those crossing routes that put you between a bruising safety and a brick-house linebacker. Just haul butt and blow past your DB like I do.” How many times have we seen the runner of that crossing route get crushed? It’s a fact of life and an occupational hazard, but let’s not blame it on the receiver and imply that guys who NEVER ran those routes could even be remotely compared. It’s ludicrous.

  19. stavreafavre says: Jul 7, 2011 3:43 PM

    Just trying to ignore any thought on difficult, unpleasant problems is pretty much the way this country operates.

  20. stixzidinia says: Jul 7, 2011 4:13 PM

    I wonder how many of the people talking about how hits to the head are part of the game in defense of Collie coming back are the same ones trying to turn guys like James Harrison into villains for playing the game the way it’s been played since the beginning.

  21. blackdb says: Jul 7, 2011 4:24 PM

    Double edged problem here. If he plays while worrying about having another one it will effect his play and in this league he can’t survive playing tentative. If he ignores it he puts his future long term health in danger. Not a fun or easy thing to deal with.

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