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McKay says league will look into unprecedented rash of ACL injuries

McKay AP

The first few weeks of training camp 2013 have resulted in an unprecedented rash of ACL injuries.

“[T]here have been more ACL injuries than ever,” Falcons CEO and Competition Committee chair Rich McKay told Jim Corbett of USA Today.

For now, the league won’t do anything about it.  Eventually, an effort will be made to determine whether there’s something more than coincidence at play.

“We have to let the data play out over the six weeks of preseason and training camp to figure out if there is some trend,” McKay said.  “Then let the experts look at it.”

Some experts, both medical and football, are offering theories anyway.

“August is the peak month for ACL tears,” Dr. Neal ElAttrache told Corbett.  “There are a lot more players on the field, and guys are trying to make the team.  So you have less predictability in practices because of that.

“The majority of ACL tears are non-contact tears.  So being in pads, during hitting or without, does not affect the instance of ACL tears much.  ACL injuries in August are not mitigated by non-contact drills or new CBA rules.”

The so-called “football guys” suspect that practicing at less than full speed could be contributing to the problem.  Then again, the “football guys” despise the 2011 reductions in practice time and intensity, making them inclined to blame anything they can on it.

Regardless, more than a year or two is necessary before any patterns can be determined or causes identified.  Even then, good luck getting the players to agree that they’ll be better protected by practicing more frequently and more intensely.

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26 Responses to “McKay says league will look into unprecedented rash of ACL injuries”
  1. jack3dsd says: Aug 12, 2013 12:17 AM

    next the league will offer insurance so players get their full salary plus 10 percent if they tear an acl and miss the season and an option for stunt double the next 10 seasons

  2. aaroncurryisbust says: Aug 12, 2013 12:17 AM

    Thanks Obama!

  3. spfootballfan says: Aug 12, 2013 12:26 AM

    Wouldn’t it be ironic if it was those new mandatory leg pads causing the ACL injuries?

  4. jchuber says: Aug 12, 2013 12:40 AM

    The reason for the injuries is LOUSY PLAYING FIELDS. But the NFL is so stupid, they only enforce player discipline, and let the owners do as they damn well please Chicago, Pittsburg, Washington DC, San Francisco, are among the worst. These owners have refused to do anything. I also need to mention the Raiders, with their dirt infields.

    But they will do a million dollar study, and then scratch their collective empty heads.

  5. thegreatgabbert says: Aug 12, 2013 12:43 AM

    The league recommended skin ointment to clear up the rash.

  6. len462 says: Aug 12, 2013 1:18 AM

    Could some guys do a cycle on performance enhancing drugs through the off season, then get clean before the one time they’re tested before the season, then report to camp with bodies that their ligaments can’t handle? The non contact blowouts are the ones that make me wonder. It might seem like a harsh question, but the NFL and NFLPA has in my mind invited these kinds of questions by dragging their butts on implementing some sort of testing.

  7. breakingb says: Aug 12, 2013 2:57 AM

    Matt Ryan is shocked.

  8. daknight93 says: Aug 12, 2013 3:08 AM

    Roger Godell’s “No Fun League” has destroyed traditional training camp activities, but the players union failed their members by agreeing to this last CBA deal with these very soft ota’s, minicamp and training camp activities…Goodell is a politician and doesn’t understand the players’ point of views and concerns…Taglibeau can relate to the players and he understands their concerns…Goodell’s league, it’s his way or the highway…well no surprise major injuries are happening all over the league.

  9. defscottyb says: Aug 12, 2013 3:20 AM

    Players coming off the juice worried about getting caught? Could be reason for weaker tendons and changed body chemistry etc. Just a hunch.

  10. trevor123698 says: Aug 12, 2013 3:31 AM

    Move it along league, there’s nothing to look into here. Sports injury is a product of malnutrition. Listen to Theo Ratliff tell his story about mineral supplementation and then go out and buy 20 grand worth of rebound FX. wake up world!

    google: DEAD ATHLETES DON’T LIE

  11. nyjetsfan08 says: Aug 12, 2013 3:33 AM

    I think it’s pretty obvious what’s happening. HGH is thought to help grow or strengthen tendons, ligaments, joints. Now that all players have to submit a sample for finding the NFL’s HGH normal threshold, there are likely a rash of players just outright going cold-turkey and discontinued use, even though the samples will supposedly not be used against the players. And if those players were also taking steroids (pretty likely), it may worsen the “withdraw” symptoms.

    I would compare it to taking a nice car (player), putting in a monstrous engine (steroids), and upgrading the suspension and brakes appropriately (HGH). Now, you take away the upgrades and this nice car is now out of control and good luck getting it to stop on a dime or flog around the track without blowing something out because of all that power you upgraded under the hood.

    I think this theory makes the most sense. I know players have had ligaments torn in past preseasons. But this year has been crazy. Why else would these big bodies be breaking down without being touched? And it’s not like it’s all over-the-hill players. These are young guys! Cris Carter basically said it was related to steroids + HGH without saying it, on Mike and Mike. He said he thinks the injuries are because the muscles are getting bigger but the joints are not growing in proportion. He never elaborated on why that would happen. But anybody with a brain can put two and two together and realize he was saying these guys are juicing. However, I go a step further and believe it’s players who are quitting HGH and, perhaps, as a result, making the joints, ligaments, and tendons weaker and more susceptible to injury. Just my opinion.

  12. nyjetsfan08 says: Aug 12, 2013 3:33 AM

    I think it’s pretty obvious what’s happening. HGH is thought to help grow or strengthen tendons, ligaments, joints. Now that all players have to submit a sample for finding the NFL’s HGH normal threshold, there are likely a rash of players just outright going cold-turkey and discontinued use, even though the samples will supposedly not be used against the players. And if those players were also taking steroids (pretty likely), it may worsen the “withdraw” symptoms.

    I would compare it to taking a nice car (player), putting in a monstrous engine (steroids), and upgrading the suspension and brakes appropriately (HGH). Now, you take away the upgrades and this nice car is now out of control and good luck getting it to stop on a dime or flog around the track without blowing something out because of all that power you upgraded under the hood.

    I think this theory makes the most sense. I know players have had ligaments torn in past preseasons. But this year has been crazy. Why else would these big bodies be breaking down without being touched? And it’s not like it’s all over-the-hill players. These are young guys! Cris Carter basically said it was related to steroids + HGH without saying it, on Mike and Mike. He said he thinks the injuries are because the muscles are getting bigger but the joints are not growing in proportion. He never elaborated on why that would happen. But anybody with a brain can put two and two together and realize he was saying these guys are juicing. However, I go a step further and believe it’s players who are quitting HGH and, perhaps, as a result, making the joints, ligaments, and tendons weaker and more susceptible to injury. Just my opinion

  13. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Aug 12, 2013 6:22 AM

    Interesting that female athletes are like 8 times more likely to experience an ACl injury than male athletes.

    Studies show that the risk of ACL injury can be reduced by proper warm up excersices. The hamstring needs to be relied on more to take the stress off the knee. Avoid straight knee landings too.

    Teams would be wise to take a close look at their strength training and warm up routines.

  14. dsonashville28 says: Aug 12, 2013 6:57 AM

    The cause for this: guys are getting too big and too muscular for their bodies’ frames. The ligaments and tendons can’t handle the extra size.

  15. mlenenski says: Aug 12, 2013 7:56 AM

    It’s the turf.

  16. mtheparrothead says: Aug 12, 2013 8:02 AM

    Unless its global warming. Then a small sample size is all you need.

  17. osiris33 says: Aug 12, 2013 9:13 AM

    It’s the turf? Yeah, tell that to RGIII and Chris Clemmons. Maybe the buffoons on the competition committee can just ban ACL tears along with kickoffs

  18. lingsun54 says: Aug 12, 2013 9:23 AM

    It’s just a statistical anomaly. The league goes through soul searching whenever there’s an unusual event. They’ll do it again some weekend when 4 starting QB’s go out with injuries.

  19. romosmicrodongs says: Aug 12, 2013 9:32 AM

    its all the redskins fault. their field, and their field alone, is responsible for all nfl acl tears

  20. harrisonhits2 says: Aug 12, 2013 9:49 AM

    I firmly believe a lot of this has to do with the fact that NFL players are so large. They pump themselves up to massive sizes, often more than the human body was really meant to handle.

    When you get a normal person who catches their foot and twists it you get a sprain.

    When you get one of these huge guys who gets their foot caught their is so much torque from their oversized body that it results in an ACL tear instead of a sprain.

  21. lanham4eve says: Aug 12, 2013 10:38 AM

    With players no longer able to tackle high, for fear of hitting the head and getting a fifteen yard penalty, players are being to tackle low. With the smallest NFL db coming in around 170-180 you are bound to see more of these kinds of injuries plain and simple. The human body was never made to withstand years of playing football, then you limit the size of the area that gets hit and things are bound to break.

  22. skimbell says: Aug 12, 2013 11:01 AM

    “August is the peak month for ACL tears”
    Man, if the U.S. senate hears about this you can bet we’ll get a pack of “global warming” legislation to fix it.

  23. stvang says: Aug 12, 2013 2:07 PM

    Greg Jennings says this is brain washing

  24. mackie66 says: Aug 12, 2013 2:20 PM

    Think I just heard the toilet flush,,,,,

  25. steelerben says: Aug 12, 2013 3:36 PM

    Anyone think that the increase to 90 players on the roster might increase the number of injuries because there is a) more players on the field and b) more competition for positions so people are pushing themselves harder without being in the right condition to do so?

  26. disturbedfred says: Oct 11, 2013 2:27 PM

    It’s definately the Redskins fault. The name is so offensive to acl’s that they spontaneously blow out. ‘If one knee is offended, we must look into it’ –Roger Goodell

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