Does Manning bear blame for Welker’s latest concussion?


When former Patriots receiver Wes Welker committed a much-publicized (and lamented) drop in Super Bowl XLVI, few blamed his quarterback for throwing a grossly inaccurate pass.

Now that current Broncos receiver Wes Welker has sustained his third concussion in his last 10 games played, some are blaming his quarterback for throwing a ball to a player who was caught between a trio of defenders.

Tom Curran of argues that Peyton Manning “bears some of the burden” for choosing to throw the ball, while feeling no pressure, to an oft-concussed slot receiver with three defensive players poised to apply a hit after the catch.  Curran even goes so far as to call the pass a “hospital ball.”

The throw doesn’t compare to the kind of pass that gets a receiver laid out in mid-air or drilled by an unsuspecting forearm or helmet right after the catch is made.  This one falls more tidily into the “stuff happens” category, with Welker trying to make the catch and reduce the target size and Texans defensive back D.J. Swearinger hitting Welker in the head with a forearm as Welker tried to get small. (Er.)

A psychologist may say that Manning’s rare display of on-field anger after the next play arose from his own feelings of guilt for getting Welker injured.  But that doesn’t mean Manning is guilty.  Manning was throwing the ball to the open man, and Welker was open.

The issue here isn’t Manning’s throw.  It’s that a veteran slot receiver has a concussion problem.  And slot receiver represents one of the few positions where it will be impossible to avoid further blows to the head.

Whether it happened in the third preseason game or Week Seven of the regular season or at some other time, a “next concussion” was inevitable for Welker.  Now, the question becomes whether he’ll return to the field and risk sustaining yet another “next concussion.”

115 responses to “Does Manning bear blame for Welker’s latest concussion?

  1. Of course a reported from New Cheatland says Manning bares some of the blame. I’d be mad too if my quarterback was never as good as Manning, didn’t need video cameras to win and players would rather play with Manning in Denver than New Cheatland with Brady.

  2. Manning and blame in the same sentence? Isn’t that sacrilegious? A being as perfect as Manning can never be blamed for anything (NOT).

  3. Manning was throwing the ball to the open man, and Welker was open.

    Manning is the OC and makes changes at the line, all of which put Welker in that position. The media regularly praises him for it.

  4. The question is whether it was the throw or is Welker susceptible to concussions; or, both? Welker has taken so many brutal hits over the years I hate to see him eating oatmeal and sounding like Mohammed Ali.

    Welker is a football player and you have to admire his passion for the game – whether you’re a hater or not.

  5. Tomorrow’s headlines will read;

    “Goodell to make a rule against touching players attempting to catch inaccurate throws.”

  6. Guys that can thread the needle and “throw guys open” are going to have more of their receivers take big hits.

    QB’s that can only make passes to wide open receivers will have less WR’s get concussed.

    Is Manning to blame? No. Is he a factor? Yes.

  7. It’s football. People get hit. Let’s not go all Dr. Phil on the topic. Welker is a small guy that catches a ton of passes over the middle. That inherently equates to a dangerous situation for him.

  8. Sad to see a great player concussed so often. I dislike the Broncos, but you have to give credit where it is due. I hope Welker is alright and I hope he does the right thing.

  9. I don’t remember him having any concussions when he played with NE. That’s mainly because Tom Brady usually puts the ball where his receivers can catch it and out of harms way.

  10. Really? Grossly inaccurate? Maybe you should look up Tebow highlights. It wasn’t a great pass, but he had it in his hands.

    People have noticed for years Peyton puts his receivers in terrible positions. Poor Austin Collie and Wes Welker may never be the same.

  11. The hit didn’t look dirty. The game is super fast, you don’t have time to sit there and calculate where your blow is gonna land on a receiver.

  12. so in a league where its hard to find enough QB’s that can actually go through progressions AND get the ball out quick enough…were going to expect that the QB also do a potential damage assessment to each possible throw as well. All within less than 3 seconds? Its a dangerous sport, I bet Welker knew that going in

  13. Manning’s job is to complete passes to his receivers. Your receiver will almost always get hit after the catch. Is Welker blaming his QB or is this just media hype?

    I’m not sure why the media always feels the need to gin up controversy where there is none.

  14. Manning wants to pad his stats by killing Austin collie and Wes welker. It makes me sick. Welker had 0 concussions with Brady in 6 season now he has 3 with Peyton in one season.

  15. Manning could have put the ball a little lower so Wes wouldn’t have been as vulnerable, but that’s football and nobody’s perfect every play.

  16. .
    Often times slot receivers catching short routes will find themselves in the crossfire of linebackers or even D-lineman.

  17. How is a pass that hits the guy right in the hands grossly inaccurate?

    Also, how is welker wide open when there are three Texans defenders right there?

  18. If players tackled like they were supposed to and wrapped up a lot of these injuries wouldn’t happen. Every concussion and blown out knee I saw last year happened with some defender going in with his shoulder to the head or knees and going for the Ronnie Lott knockout blow. Never trying to wrap up and drive. Would be interesting to see a statistic on rugby to football injuries.

  19. Nobody is to blame, Welker ducked and the DB led with his shoulder, both natural reactions on both players part with the DB actually being more careful.

  20. seems that as serious as some of todays injuries are, equipment needs to be evolved to help prevent them. Knee injuries and ACL tears are as common as mosquitos and concussions are becoming one of the headline concerns. If we can put a man on the moon, we can figure out a way to protect these areas.

  21. As the slot receiver, Welker routinely is required to run the slants and mid range routes over the middle. That is inherantly dangerous, although the rules have changed recently to make it much less so than it used to be.
    On this play Welker was meeting his job description. Manning’s job is to hit the open receiver with the best opportunity to gain the most yardage, and that is what he did.
    The safety’s job is to try and break up the pass.

    Everyone was doing their job. IT IS CALLED FOOTBALL!
    Sometimes people get hurt and if we start to fix blame for each of those plays we may as well embrace soccer and be done with it.

  22. Guess what?…today’s football helmets are not much better than the helmets the players had when I played in college over 30 yrs ago.

    It’s the same “rock hard” plastic shell on the outside with padding and airbags on the inside. One factor remains unchanged over the last 30 yrs…you can only put so much padding on the inside of these helmets.

    Once you have exhausted all the area on the inside of a helmet…what can be done to make helmets safer…NOTHING?

    How bout putting padding on the outside of the helmet too?

    It has been done before and it worked. First Willie Lanier saved his career when a trainer devised a helmet for Willie that had a wide strip of padding “on the outside” of his helmet…Lanier went on to have a Hall of Fame career and play 10 more seasons.

    Then came the “Pro Cap”…a molded to fit padding designed to be worn on “the outside” of existing helmets…and it worked too!

    It worked for NFL Pros like Mark Kelso and Steve Wallace…two NFL stars who were faced with ending their careers early until they tried a Pro Cap…IT WORKED.

    The NFL knows the Pro Cap works but for some crazy reason, they will not allow the product to be used, even though the NFL allowed players to use the Pro Cap previously.

    It’s rather simple folks…want to stop concussions in football…add a layer of padding to the outside of the existing helmets.

  23. Manning has been serving his slot WR/TE to opposing defenders for years.

    Look at Dallas Clark, Austin Collie and Wes Welker. Manning throws alot and he loves throwing down the numbers. His receivers have taken some huge hits over the years.

    So yes, he deserves some of the blame. He is, in fact, the one delivering a dangerous pass.

    Swearinger is a dirt bag, but the hit was clean.

  24. Love the revisionist history of Pats-fans about Brady’s miss to a wide-open Welker, whom if he had hit him in stride, would’ve gone for a TD with the DBs in pursuit

    Instead it was an overthrown ball which a 5’8 Welker had to reach up for, contort his body mid-air to even get his hands on (and the ball still might’ve knocked it loose once he hit the ground from having to contort 180 degrees in the air)

    But keep believing he should’ve caught it – just like Pats fans believe Asante Samuel “dropped” an Eli interception in the Superbowl that he never had his hands on and glanced off his finger tips at the extreme height of his jump

  25. the important issue is Welker’s long term health. He will be alive long after he has left football and he needs the stuff between his ears to be working correctly to enjoy what he has done on the field.

  26. Like it or not, the reality of the situation is that a lot of the time Welker puts himself in the position to be concussed. He’s a small WR to begin with, and when a DB is lined up to give him a shoulder right to his chest, he instinctively ducks down to try to avoid contact and then gets his bell rung.
    I’m sure this will all be a moot point in the near future. The way the Fuhrer is changing the game, it will only be a matter of time before defenders wont be allowed to hit a receiver until he secures the catch and begins to make the proverbial “football move”.

  27. Wes Welker
    Vontaze Burfict (IDP)
    Sam Bradford
    Matt Prater (idiot kicker)

    I should probably mail out warning cards to any player I’ve drafted on a FFL roster.

  28. It is no secret that Austin collie wes welker brandon stockley had multiple concussions playing with manning….my guy welker had 0 concussions playing with tom brady and now he has 3 in 10 months Manning felt guilty see his reaction…

  29. DJ Swearinger is the player who demolished Dustin Keller’s knee in a preseason game against the Dolphins last year. Miami spent $5M on Keller and never saw him in an actual game because of the dirty hit. Keller has never played a game since the hit.
    Swearinger seems to make a name for taking out name players in preseason games. Message to all NFL teams – don’t play Houston preseason.

  30. You’re all morons. Welker is an undersized man in a sport of gigantic humans. He’s going to take hits that have a higher percent of damage rate than another WR who is 6 inches taller with 40lbs of more muscle.

    Welker knows this risk, and that’s what makes him great.

  31. Watched the welker drop over and over… That ball was mildly overthrown. Any receiver should have caught that regardless

  32. He’s always thrown suicide balls over the middle when he’s under pressure.

    This is nothing new.

  33. I know it goes with the territory, but is anybody else tired of every post involving Manning turning into a “Brady is better than Manning because . . .” debate?

  34. Brady consistantly leads or back shoulders WRs away from the big hit. On Welkers SBowl drop(should have had it, both hands on the ball), that’s part of the reason the pass seemed a little wild, if you watch the replay. Manning just doesn’t care, it’s all about the completion. How anyone could say that was a cheap hit on Welker is beyond me. Welker’s made 30 mil during his career, I think this yrs money is guaranteed. Walk away. No ring, but he’s been to 3 SBowls. Just isn’t worth it. Go play the ponies

  35. Football is a risky game, I do not believe Peyton would ever intentionally put someone at greater risk of injury, this is a violent game and sometimes you get the short straw.

  36. The dirty little secret is that the slot receiver position is now the number one receiver position. Look at the best receiver in the game, Larry Fitzgerald, he’s playing in the slot position. Jimmy Graham is basically a big slot receiver. The offenses are looking to where the defenses are vulnerable and where it’s more predictable to complete a pass. It’s the toughest position on the field because of the traffic but it’s 25 yard pass for 20 yards, not a 30 or 35 yard pass for 20 yards to the outside.

  37. Can’t believe the people on here saying Manning should receive some of the blame. Ridiculous. It’s football and unfortunately concussions happen.

  38. In Other News:

    Tom Curran went on to say that he believes it was Tom Brady’s fault that Rob Gronkowski got injured last season too.

    “Why the nerve of some these quarterbacks to throw the ball to their receivers.” Curran was quoted as saying.

    Bring back the “Three Yards And A Cloud of Dust Days.”

  39. Peyton gets a pass for everything. Gets a pass for choking every playoffs, not showing up in the superbowl, setting his receivers up to get lit up, taunting, etc. He is just not as good as people say he is. I just don’t see it. Would much rather have Tom Brady as my QB. He is a REAL winner.

  40. So 1 guy had 3 defenders on him…and Manning couldn’t find an open guy with room?

    The math doesn’t work on that one. But no matter what, Manning ain’t getting the blame.

  41. Ah yes, blame Manning for running a play that every team in the league uses. It’s also his fault Welker is a smaller receiver. He plays and gets paid to play the slot and he’s talented to the point that defenders lay the wood to him and try to take him out. I doubt any QB relishes putting one of his better teammates in harms way.

  42. So I’m trying to figure this out. Welker is 5’9 so he can only play in the slot. Is Manning supposed to have Welker do cartwheels on his route running or something else crazy to avoid a tackler. It’s part of the game!!!! Welker and Collie both had concussions with other qb’s throwing them the ball as well so to say it’s Mannings fault is assinine at best.

  43. Brady almost always passes low to guys in the middle of a meat grinder. He intentionally takes them to the turf to avoid the kind of violent impacts that Peyton habitually puts his receivers through. Austin Collie, Anthony Gonzalez, Dallas Clark Welker, the list goes on. All had multiple concussions while being a Manning receiver.
    Welker dropped his head after the catch making it the only target Swearenger could possible hit other than his knees.

  44. hospital ball. that is great. perhaps one of the worst all time hospital balls was thrown by kevin kolb as eagles QB to desean jackson, who was then summarily blown up by falcons def back dunta robinson.

    peyton manning has been and always will be over rated. his pedestrian playoff won-lost record speaks for itself. and those indy teams are known for for playoff chokes as much as anything else.

    eli is the real gamer of those whose last name is manning. 2 SB appearances, 2 W’s.

  45. Manning been getting his slot receivers and TE brain damage since his days with the Colts….funny how Welker didn’t have this problem with Brady…Manning enjoys putting the ball in tight spots with total disregard for his receivers health…just ask Dallas Clark and Brandon Stokley…

  46. So what I’m getting from these comments is that if a reciever has defenders near him and the quarterback throws it to him and the reciever gets hurt as a result of the play, the injury is the quarterback’s fault. Think for a minute about how ridiculous that sounds.

  47. The man love for Brady here is really quite disturbing… You no life queens actually watch every pass to see if the Uggs spokesperson puts his receivers in a better position than saint tom? Why? And who cares ?

  48. Patiently waiting for Manning to jump on this board to talk smack.

    Since it’s still the preaseason, afterall.

  49. I surprised no one else has said this. There is no fault, it is simply KARMA.

    It is the EXACT same hit Welker put on Talib to knock him out of the playoff game last year.

    Only difference – there was a penalty here (when there should not have been) and a talk of fines (which there should not be).

    It was a clean football hit per the rules and the guy still got his bell rung. This sport is not for the faint of heart people.

  50. But you can’t blame Manning. Weaker said so himself that his passes were like long handoffs. Meaning, whatever did he think Brady’s passes were?

  51. I’m thinking Manning probably let the guy know it was an unnecessary hit for a couple of different reasons.

    There was only second left in the half.

    And, it is the PRE-SEASON!

    I’m sure there are some unspoken rules for some of the veteran players. Like trying not to end a guy’s career on a pointless play in the pre-season.

    C’mon man.

  52. I count that as,the 7th diagnosed that we know of.
    Great player, I remember a clip of BB talking about Wes stating he was,getting blown up a couple of times a game!
    Here is the issue when the player won’t quit and team won’t stop them…anyone think he isn’t going to have serious issues in the very near future.
    Sad, good guy. Damage done.

  53. Shocking that Curran would say something anti-Peyton.

    Gimme a break. Manning plays his position, just as Welker plays his. It’s football and that’s a ball that’s thrown by every QB to every receiver around the league.

    The Pats bias is dripping in that Curran commentary. Still bitter about the AFC Title Game last year?


  54. It’s hard to blame DJ for that hit. Go back and watch it again. Swearinger has Welker lined up in the numbers and a 1/4 second before impact Welker ducks his head. Swearinger led with his shoulder and the contact with Welkers head was due to Welker dipping his head.

    They may be professionals but no one can react that fast.

    It was a penalty and I agree with the call because per the rule book he made contact with the head, but really have a hard time with the idea that Swearinger was trying to “take off” Welker’s head.

  55. If we need someone to blame start with the coach who called the play that put Welker in a position to get his bell run in a PRESEASON game.

  56. I would go as far as to say that QB’s should be penalized for these hits on defenseless receivers. If the QB wouldn’t lay the receiver out to dry, then a DB wouldn’t lay the receiver out.

  57. Manning doesn’t bear some of the blame– he bears most of the blame.

    Manning is effectively the offensive coordinator and he creates and then calls those over the middle plays way too frequently.

    He is throwing his receiver to the wolves for a measly 8 yard gain.

  58. Kazoo’s been hurt while playing for Manning more than any other QB, that’s a fact. The helmet he wears should be looked at, slot guys need the extra protection in regard to helmets and should be allowed to wear whatever works best to keep the brain safe. The rules committee needs to reevaluate the allowed or condoned helmet as there are better options to keep a guy in the slot safe from severe brain injuries due to concussive force applied by lesser quality but bigger/stronger DE’s and DB’s. I LOVE NFL Football and hate to see anyone get hurt while PLAYING a meaningless game in pre-season, let’s get some language in the rules or into contracts that makes the game safer while not taking away from the action that makes it what it is. AMERICAS GAME, so much more than BEISBALL. MCS is a real problem that needs to be addressed, we don’t need more athletes having their careers cut short or their LIVES for that matter due to rules that only serve to fatten the wallets of manufacturers and the people that don’t play the game(front office and the commish). Let’s use the leagues officials who make the rules take a few hits like these and the rules will change.

  59. Of course Manning is to blame, Welker’s not the first player he’s put in harm’s way by trying to pad his stats, and it won’t be the last. But actual blame on Mr. Golden Boy? It’ll never happen, not in this life, in fact, he’ll probably get some kind of personal award for it.

  60. Many of you have already hinted at this, but since injuries are a part of the game, at least do as much as possible to see that if they occur, they occur in something meaningful.

    Reduce the number of pre-season games.

  61. I have watched Wes Welker for years. He may be the toughest player that ever played the game. Implying he is “fragile” is not worthy of a response. Brady normally delivered the ball low for Wes to get down and away from the big hit as well as to keep a deflection from popping into the hands of a defender. If Wes had an open running lane Brady would hit him in stride at the numbers. Peyton, in general, throws the ball higher which leads the receiver into hits and creates more deflections with a higher risk of interceptions. Go back and watch the film if you disagree.

  62. The answer is the same as the answer to the other great football questions: “Is megamind overrated?” “Does rex grossman deserve credit for peyton’s one ring?” “Did 18 play awful in the superbowl prompting the league to take measures to assist him?” All of the correct answers are yes. This concludes today’s lesson kids.

  63. From next season’s rulebook:

    3. Hitting and Tackling

    a. After the quarterback releases the football, all defending players must count to “3 Mississippi” before they are allowed to hit an offensive player.

  64. As for the “drop” in Super Bowl XLVI, virtually everybody blamed that play for the Patriots loss. Most of us (Patriots fans) believe that both the receiver and quarterback share the responsibility for that missed opportunity but think too much of both players to blame either player for a “team” loss.

  65. Manning should take blame for putting his wide receiver in that spot. Lob pass over the middle against a zone safeties are happy to lay the wood. Wes Welker should take equal blame for not taking the hit to the chest and ducking his head in the strike zone.
    The defender played that as well as he could. If he goes any lower with shoulder Bronco fans would upset he blew out Welkers knee.

  66. I think this one is on Welker.

    Instead of going down to the ground, he got low to the point where the only point of contact would his head or his knees.

    QB’s do the same thing when they’re about to get sacked and then motion for the flag when the rusher has nowhere to hit them but in those two spots (Drew Brees is the master of this).

  67. Peyton Manning is so good that there are now articles criticizing him for not being able to see the future.

  68. Austin Collie and Anthony Gonzalez are two other guys. Now Wes Welker. See a pattern here? Maybe Curran is on to something.

  69. Why the heck was Welker still in at that late point of the game?

    All those blaming the tackler either didn’t see the slo-mo close up from all angles, or you have an agenda.

    Wes is a tiny guy. The only way for a tackler not to have hit Wes’ helmet on that tackle is for the tackler to have been on his knees. The tackler approached very low.

    As it was the tackler hit Wes with part of his outside shoulder, and mostly right forearm. No helmet contacted Wes. Wes’ dropped his head into the tackler as the tackle began. The tackler in no way targeted Wes’ head.

  70. So Austin Collie, Anthony Gonzalez and Dallas Clark are all out of football with concussion issues but that has nothing to do with the guy that threw ’em the ball.
    Got it…

  71. To blame Manning for anything is to invite the end of days.

    The fact that Manning hasn’t won every single superbowl since he came into the league is solely the result of having inferior teammates and officiating.

    If Manning throws an incomplete or an INT it is due to the receiver being int he wrong place. The ball is always 100% where Manning intended it to be and he’s never wrong on where it should be.

  72. Welker is already wearing a bubble helmet. Where do you go from there? Maybe it’s time for him to get out of the game for the sake of his family. That’s way more important than winning a Super Bowl. As for Manning,I do think Tom E. Curran is onto something.

  73. Anyone who thinks that was a devastating hit needs their head examined.

    At minimum Wes should sit out until the Broncos are past the September game with the Seahawks.

    Everyone knows the Hawks place a toll on all of those crossing routes across the middle. You want to catch the ball over the middle, pay the man….Hawks rules!

  74. mrozma says: Aug 25, 2014 9:05 AM

    I don’t remember him having any concussions when he played with NE. That’s mainly because Tom Brady usually puts the ball where his receivers can catch it and out of harms way

    How many concussions have you had? Just asking because your memory sucks. And FYI to all the haters that turn EVERY post into something about Peyton just to hate: It’s a proven fact that concussions are a cumulative issue. To deny that all the hits taken while playing with (superman that delivers his passes with cushions and pillows) Brady played no part in his current condition is ignorant.

  75. I felt bad for Marvin Harrison who caught 140 plus passes from Manning setting the all-time single season record and the concussions he had that year… oh wait
    Also Manning has thrown to multiple receivers over the past 16 years and you pick out 3 that have had concussions so it has to be because of the way the most accurate QB in the league threw them the ball.

  76. yea marvin harrison and reggie waynes careers have been decimated by concussions all because of peyton

    i see the patriots homers are all out in full force again this year in the preseason. let me guess all of your predictions (along with curran) are 19-0?

  77. Marvin Harrison and RWayne ran their routes between the hashes and the sidelines. Almost exclusively outs, seams and posts. The only way they get concussed is if they ran into the gatorade table or the goal post.

  78. Please, Wes, it’s time to retire. It the NFL of 2014, with more zone, a slot receiver catching balls in traffic between the numbers is in for some bone-jarring hits. This is serious stuff with multiple concussions {MTBI’s}, and to be honest, who knows what his career total is. No helmet can help or solve this. it’s his brain impacting his skull inside the helmet. These are traumatic brain injuries, not some headache. Wes, think of your family and RETIRE, now. I would have thought that Junior Seau’s suicide might have woken more people up…..guess not, sadly. The NFL should get very involved in this.
    And, add me to those who think that Peyton’s on field decision making is reflective of his FORMER arm strength and zip on the ball. It’s not there now.
    Bit then again, would YOU play in the NFL if you had PM’s neck injury, along with his income and assets. Not me.

  79. Manning is supposed to be this “above reproach game manager” who knows everything going on, but he keeps setting receivers up to be killed.

    But at least he wasn’t held.

  80. seriously pats fans show some brains no offenses lets break it down for a sec.
    1) first off your hyprocritcal and ignorant to say and think “peyton can never do any wrong” (sarcastic tone) so i could say the same thing of brady and i can also blame him for gronks injuries to right i mean if we are blaming the guy who throws the football just saying or reasoning with your lwhen he was open.
    2) your going to sit here and try convince everyone welker never had a concussion with the pats i call B.S. lets use our brains here guys its no secret that pats disgiuse injuries and arent the most honest franchise and theres no secret of that. ie Aquib Talib
    3) in this play everyone did there job the quarterback, reciever and saftey sometime people are going to get hit in my opinion welker made the decision to lower his head not payton and the saftey chose to lead with his shoulder not payton figure it out.
    4) so what you guys think we should have flags now if the reciever gets injured cause the QB did his job and threw him the ball when he was open its the recievers job to protect him self and in some situations your going to be exposed

  81. adding to #2 topic of not being honest or ethical in how they do things let bring to light the spygate scandal. havent won a super since you know one has to wonder about the integrity of the orginzation at that time. just sayin i dont trust one thing that coach says or orginization your always trying to hide something injuries,scandals, ect….

  82. Lord, The comments here are priceless and what one would expect from a Curran opinion. I mean, the guy is like Skip Bayless with a GED–pretty useless, but probably won’t wet his pants in public.

    If Manning throws death balls and has for years, why were Dilger and Pollard–who each played TE for him for many years, not brought up. Jacob Tamme, who has 4-5 seasons as Manning’s TE in very slot receiver-like use. Convenience? And Stokley was injury prone (not just his head) in Balt before Indy and Denver. Some guys are prone to these things and some are not. Furthermore, getting one makes you more susceptible.

    Have you EVER heard a receiver say “Naah, I don’t want to play with Manning. Too dangerous?” Receivers would do ANYTHING to play with him. And Rodgers. And Brady. And if it takes going over the middle, sticking your head in a vice, whatever, to get 90 catches, 1,100 yards, and ten TDs, they’ll do that as well. Manning is a career-maker for receivers. He made Pierre Garcon a very rich man in DC. Same for Dallas Clark. And Julius Thomas soon, too.

    Playing football is dangerous–slot receivers and safeties probably have the highest incidence of concussions (IIRC safeties lead all positions in concussions) because of the position they play. TEs are usually a little bigger and maybe that helps–smaller CBs and S’s are less likely to head-hunt on a 240 lb guy than a 190 lb slot receiver.

    If you want to look at this with half a brain, you have to analyze the play–the route, the D alignment, and the pass. Maybe one offense emphasizes that slot guy crossing the middle while another has him cutting outside underneath the split end, or running up the seam.

    I suspect the best measure of a QB’s culpability would be how many different guys on his staff have this problem, as opposed to the total number, because of the likelihood of recurrence. And what defenses he faces–the old Colts had a finesse rep that if you beat the receivers up, you’d win, which probably made the DBs a lot more aggressive (i.e. likely to recklessly smash a guy to intimidate him). If you are playing a team with a strong running attack, and you are a S/CB/LB, you are more likely to have divided attention and less likely to be looking to intimidate a WR first because you might miss a running play. (Back to my last point, Manning has played 14 seasons, thrown passes to probably 50 guys, and three of them, all slot or TE/slot players, have had repeated concussion issues. Roughly 2,000 completions to Harrison and Wayne, and no concussions. Have his RBs had concussions on pass patterns? I can’t recall but know James did not in six seasons, not did Addai. Brown was hurt a lot, and some of that may have been his head–not sure.

    Maybe it’s the defense’s fault? Are more of these concussions the result of man or zone? Cover-1/2/3? One thing is for sure: At least a half dozen guys are factors in most concussions–in this case, the QB, WR, and tackler who caused it, plus any other defender whom the WR may have been trying to avoid, another WR who missed a pick or downfield block, etc.

    Asking a broader range of questions and looking for an actual unbiased answer takes work. And some creativity. Or you can come up with a half-assed opinion and spout it, like Tom Curran. And Skip Bayless. Those two are hardly capable of it, but you’ll probably find a little thought about an issue goes a long way.

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