For several years, the NFL has discussed making mandatory the leg pads that so many players refuse to wear, either because they believe they can run faster without them — or because the absence of the pads makes them look cool or tough or intimidating.
That soon may change, at the behest of the league office.
Alex Marvez of FOXSports.com reports that owners meeting this week in Atlanta plan to vote Tuesday on a proposal that would compel players to wear hip, thigh, and knee pads, beginning in 2013.
It won’t be a surprise if the measure passes. The pendulum has swung sharply toward safety, and not just as it relates to the organ that resides inside the skull.
Though these pads won’t protect against catastrophic injuries, they’ll shield players against the bumps and bruises that can make a player miss a game or cause him to be less effective.
Next, the owners need to make mouthpieces mandatory, and they should force players to use the best available helmets.
And any player who complains about those efforts should be forever precluded from complaining in any way about his post-football health.