NFL will test (and surely fail) more Schutt AiR Advantage helmets

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As the NFL prepares for Antonio Brown Helmet Grievance 2.0, which may indeed be coming, the NFL will be cutting off potential arguments and/or improving its position in the court of public opinion.

Case in point: Ian Rapoport of the NFL announced on Monday morning that “two more helmets — same Schutt AiR Advantage that he prefers — are being tested for possible use.” Rapoport adds that they were made in different years than the helmet that the NFL originally tested last week.

That’s fine, but a source with knowledge of the situation previously told PFT that the NFL believes that no Schutt AiR Advantage will pass testing. They still feel compelled to do it, and to tell their in-house reporter that they’re doing it, because it makes the NFL seem more fair and reasonable at a time when it can be argued that the NFL is being unfair and unreasonable to Brown, whose preferred helmet model was rushed to testing and who will not receive a one-year grace period to wear that helmet, like others whose helmet models were deemed unsafe received in 2018.

After that reality was pointed out on Twitter in response to Rapoport’s initial tweet, he followed it up with this far less optimistic version of the facts: “In the minds of the testers, this is all moot. A Schutt AiR Advantage was tested and failed. The determination was that AB must wear an approved helmet.”

So why test the other models? It’s a confusing position for the league, but the willingness to consider other Schutt AiR Advantage helmets prevents Brown from arguing that the NFL failed to consider other Schutt AiR Advantage helmets. It also potentially gives the NFL the ability to argue that it hasn’t generally added the Schutt AiR Advantage to the list of prohibited helmets, since this opens the door to an argument that, like Tom Brady in 2018, Brown should get a one-year grace period during which he can try out new helmets while also wearing his preferred model.

19 responses to “NFL will test (and surely fail) more Schutt AiR Advantage helmets

  1. I’d make the fool wear a leather one. Just sign this paper please that absolves everyone from any liability.

  2. Can the league just hurry up and run him out of the league and blackball him,,,,,like they did Kaepernick.
    Look how much better the lesgud has been since Kaep had bern banished. It will ll bd even better when AB is run off for good

  3. I can see his point if the new ones are uncomfortable or block side views, most likely he is being a cry baby about it.
    On the other hand if he signed a waver relieving the NFL of any and all future claims of injury. It is the guys life. He should be able to choose his own helmet.

  4. He had the one year grace period like everyone else, not the Raiders fault he didn’t plan ahead. I don’t see why he gets an extra year. Where do you draw the line on extra years to transition? Failure to plan on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine.

  5. The one year grace was last year, for all players, not just Brady. There’s a list of approved helmets for 2019 going forward. The NFL couldn’t say until now the Schutt 2006-designed model was definitely no good because like Brown they couldn’t even find one made under 10yrs ago and would have considered them improper under the 10-year rule anyway so no need to test them for a single diva whose attitude all but confirms his old helmet is unsafe.

  6. Will some enterprising reporter find out how the helmets that were tested initially were determined? Did the team equipment people send the make and model to the independent testing organization? Did the players identify their current helmets for the study? NOCSAE did not pull the make and models out of a hat. Three Schutt helmets were in the red (prohibited) zone. Did Brown or someone at his instigation intentionally misidentify the helmet he was using so it would not be banned? In 2014 Schutt admitted the padding used in their AiR Advantage helmets would not pass current test standards so Brown probably knew the helmet would fail. Did the Steelers assist him in creating the “loophole” by failing to identify his helmet for the study? The NFL seeming willingness to keep testing a model that has failed smacks of trying to avoid further investigation into their initial study.

  7. I’m calling shenanigans on the whole AB/helmet saga, it’s not like he’s a rookie or someone who’s never played in the NFL and was ignorant to the helmet rule changes, like TB12, he’s a veteran and has been served plenty of notice of said rule changes prior to this year, like Chris Simms has said, why would anyone not want to wear a lighter/safer helmet. It almost seems to me that AB is doing everything he can not to participate in training camp.

  8. dltarnnr says:
    August 19, 2019 at 10:48 am
    So what did the poster boy wear? And why are they not giving AB the same year grace period?

    Which poster boy? There were a few veterans, some arguably higher profile than AB that were faced with switching. Doesn’t matter which one you mean though because they all have made the switch.

  9. Brown has made himself a joke. There’s no reason he couldn’t be at practice while his agent represents him in this silly mess. Instead, he acts like a diva by missing practices because of a helmet grievance. Seriously? Is he testing helmets? Is he driving around to pick up potential helmets for testing? Just get your ass to practice or retire. I’m not even a Raiders fan, but this is pathetic and it’s sad to see him tarnish his legacy with these and other diva antics in recent years.

  10. rdforty2 says:
    August 19, 2019 at 10:43 am
    There is NO argument to be made that the NFL is being unfair to Brown

    I agree that for the NFL to suddenly rush testing and get his new helmet banned was childish, and that they really should, since that was a change they made, give him a year to switch and adapt. But Brown has also done his share of unreasonable here too. And in anyevent, there is no excuse for him to be punishing his team mates and organization over a league decision. He should be at camp and if not drills still be soing something. Playbook study, mentoring younger players, film study, etc… plus the biggie any alpha dog elute veteran should be doing on his team….setting an example.

  11. What is the exact test? How is it performed? What is considered pass/fail? Is the test non-destructive?

  12. What a weird reality these people live in. When my employer tells me to do something, I do it. If I don’t, they get rid of me and get someone else.

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