Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph was brutally knocked out on the field today, and adding insult to injury, the cart that came out to assist him to the locker room malfunctioned, leaving him staggering to the locker room with members of the medical staff supporting him.
The NFL says that was all fine.
According to the league, Rudolph didn’t need a cart and another one was available if he had.
“A cart was brought on the field in the event it was needed,” the league said in a statement. “After evaluating the player, medical staff determined a cart was not necessary in this instance. Had one been needed, there was a backup cart on the other sideline which was immediately available. He received appropriate medical care per gameday protocols, and is now in the concussion protocol.”
That explanation is hard to swallow. Rudolph was unconscious on the field, and the medical personnel that checked on him immediately removed his facemask, which is standard practice for when a player will be strapped to a stretcher and placed on a cart. A cart was brought out for him because the medical staff felt it was necessary. If the cart hadn’t malfunctioned, Rudolph would have been placed on it to be taken off the field and to a waiting ambulance.
Instead, Rudolph looked shaky as he was helped off the field, making a scary situation look even worse.