On Monday night, Raiders quarterback Terrelle Pryor suffered a concussion on a (legal) helmet-to-helmet hit while he was attempting to run the ball near the Denver goal line.
Pryor remained in the game for two plays, even though a replay review of the question of whether he fumbled on the play created a gap of two minutes and 50 seconds between snaps.
After the drive ended, Pryor was taken to the locker room for evaluation. So why didn’t the evaluation happen sooner?
The NFLPA is concerned about the manner in which the situation was handled, we’re told. NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy tells PFT that “[a]ll indications are that the Raiders followed the proper protocol.”
Complicating matters is that, in some cases, the symptoms don’t immediately emerge. Likewise, players remain inclined to hide their symptoms so that they can remain in the game.
Still, with nearly three minutes between snaps, it seems like someone should have taken a closer look at Pryor not after the drive ended, but before the next play.
The broader message to the teams (and to the broadcasters, who were proclaiming Pryor to be “fine” simply because he got up off the ground and didn’t stagger) is that any forceful helmet-to-helmet hit should result in the player being checked out at the next opportunity — even if he otherwise looks fine.
In this specific case, there was ample time to take at least a cursory look at Pryor, but no one seemed to be inclined to do it.