NFL expects new injury timeout rule to be used sparingly

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The NFL’s new injury timeout rule that gives medical spotters the authority to call down to the field and order an injury timeout if it appears that a player has a concussion has the potential to make a huge impact on the game: A key player could be removed from the field even if he insists that he’s fine, just because someone in the box upstairs thinks it looks like he suffered a concussion.

But NFL V.P. of Officiating Dean Blandino says the rule change probably won’t be as significant as people think. Blandino said on SiriusXM NFL Radio that trainers will use the authority sparingly, and it’s not expected to happen more than a few times in an entire season.

“We’ve looked at a lot of tape, and it’s a handful of times. If it was 10 times, that’s a lot,” Blandino said. “I really don’t anticipate it happening very often. . . . I’d be surprised if it was as widespread as some people think it’s going to be.”

Blandino said the officials already cal medical timeouts when necessary, and the medical spotters are just another set of eyes on the rare occasions when no one else notices that a player looks dazed.

“What we’re teaching our game officials, and this has been the direction for a while now, is if you recognize a player who is unstable or disoriented and is clearly not 100 percent, then we have to get that player attention and we have to stop the game and get him out of the game,” Blandino said. “Where the trainer upstairs, where they’re really going to have to come into play, is when something happens and it’s behind the play, they don’t see it and the medical staff misses it, they’ll have the ability to call down to the game officials.”

The rule might have been employed in the Super Bowl when Patriots receiver Julian Edelman seemed to suffer a concussion but stayed in the game, and if it had been it could have altered the outcome of the Super Bowl. So the potential on-field impact of this rule is significant. Even if the NFL doesn’t think it will be used often.

32 responses to “NFL expects new injury timeout rule to be used sparingly

  1. Mike Evans got absolutely lit up at the end of a Bucs game this past season. Bucs were out of timeouts, so the clock ran out. A medical timeout would certainly have been used in that situation and the Bucs may very well have won the game…..leading to Jameis being in Tennessee, Mariota in Tampa.

  2. How many rules need to be enacted to “Stop the Patriots”? By all accounts Julian Edelman DID NOT HAVE A CONCUSSION. Why don’t they just stop all of this nonsense and just let other teams call a Mulligan if the Patriots execute a play that they don’t like. Just limit them to four or five per game and the coaching chasm can be transcended.

  3. We all know the NFL will use this in a corrupt manner to alter the outcome of games. At least the WWE is honest about its scripting and manipulation.

  4. Bill Belichick probably has an assigned player on offense and defense now to fake concussion symptoms if they need a free timeout.

  5. Is there a 10 second runoff? I could see a guy purposely staggering around after a play after a long completion or something in the waning seconds of a game to get an extra timeout.

  6. Get ready to see two or three players at a time display concussion type symptoms at the end of every close game when their team does not have a time out to use.

    In fact, expect to see this several plays in a row, if needed.

    Then, when the Patriots do it, expect outrage to rain down on Belichek for cheating.

  7. get bertilfox some cheese for that whine.

    Edelman likely would have come out for one play and been cleared(or maybe not). and come back in

  8. What could go wrong? You’r gonna see medical peeps that are biased because of a paycheck yanking out key players from the other team. Watch. You can’t limit them because a concussion can happen on every play (offensive and defensive lines).

  9. Not only did he not get a concussion on that play we know because he took 2 concussion tests.

  10. “Edelman likely would have come out for one play and been cleared(or maybe not). and come back in”

    Umm he underwent the concussion tests and passed, he had no concussion.

  11. bertilfox says:

    How many rules need to be enacted to “Stop the Patriots”? By all accounts Julian Edelman DID NOT HAVE A CONCUSSION. Why don’t they just stop all of this nonsense and just let other teams call a Mulligan if the Patriots execute a play that they don’t like. Just limit them to four or five per game and the coaching chasm can be transcended.

    ———————————————————-
    Lol. The amount of delusion in Pats fans who think their team are the cause of every NFL move is reaching epic and hilarious proportions. Lack of perspective is a mental illness.

  12. How soon before refs are handing out red cards for faking concussions. That’s where this game is headed right? Players stubbing their toes and screaming bloody murder to stop play. This league blows.

  13. @thebifforacle
    They mentioned the super bowl and a possible different outcome. No delusion my man that’s why Pats fans are posting. Blind rage again hater.

  14. It amazes me the level of jealousy that is out there amongst the 31 “non-Patriot” fan bases. They are in everyone’s heads. An article about concussion protocol and almost every comment is about Belichick/Patriots.

    Trust me….we love it. Keep em’ coming.

  15. Russel Wilson in the NFCCG after Clay Mathews blew him up.

    That dude looked like he had no idea where he was for like 2 minutes.

  16. @thebifforacle

    How about institution of the illegal contact rule because Peyton Manning and the Colts kept crying to the league about how physical the Patriots were being with their receivers? What’s your explanation for how that’s not related to the Patriots?

    Or elimination of the Tuck Rule even though it was correctly called in the Snow Bowl. That’s a rule change based on something that benefitted the Patriots.

    Or the “ineligible receiver” rule with the linemen that Harbaugh and the Ravens whined about to the league because they were so upset Belchick out thought them

    That’s three and I didn’t even need to think that hard. Good call on Patriots fans being delusional though

  17. thebifforacle says:
    Jun 26, 2015 9:45 AM

    bertilfox says:

    How many rules need to be enacted to “Stop the Patriots”? By all accounts Julian Edelman DID NOT HAVE A CONCUSSION. Why don’t they just stop all of this nonsense and just let other teams call a Mulligan if the Patriots execute a play that they don’t like. Just limit them to four or five per game and the coaching chasm can be transcended.

    ———————————————————-
    Lol. The amount of delusion in Pats fans who think their team are the cause of every NFL move is reaching epic and hilarious proportions. Lack of perspective is a mental illness.
    ——————————————————
    And yet the article specifically name Edleman and drives the point home with his picture being posted too. All this after knowing(one would hope a professional sportswriter would know) that Edelman passed concussion protocol. I’ll say it again, Russell Wilson thought he was Batman after Matthews skulled him and yet not a word.

  18. “Fox sideline reporter Erin Andrews said Wilson was never checked for a concussion on the sidelines. He came back into the game on the next Seahawks’ possession without missing a snap.” Yeah, sure this is all about Edelman. Wilson played arguably the worst game of his career prior to the Seahawks’ 21-point outburst in the fourth quarter and overtime. He threw four interceptions, and didn’t complete a single pass in the first 26 minutes of play. Then the light in his brain came back on.

  19. By all accounts Julian Edelman DID NOT HAVE A CONCUSSION.
    ============

    By all accounts???

    LOL

    By all accounts Pats aren’t documented serial cheaters, they just keep getting caught and punished but Pats fans, by all accounts, think it’s a conspiracy.

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