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Kyle Williams and Concussions Targeted by the New York Giants? Fan Perspective
This NFL season has been filled with concussions and players being penalized for helmet-to-helmet hits which are known for an increase concussion risk. Even if these hits were not intentional, players were still suspended. Given this, the news that the New York Giants specifically targeted San Francisco 49ers' Kyle Williams because of his history with concussions has me wondering why there are no suspensions or red flags being thrown.
Two of the Giants players, Jacquian Williams and Devin Thomas, publically came out to reporters and Star-Ledger columnist Steve Politi saying that Kyle Williams was a target from the start. Jacquian Williams was quoted as saying, "We knew he had four concussions, so that was our biggest thing, was to take him outta the game."
Devin Thomas said basically the same thing when he stated, "He's had a lot of concussions. We were just like, 'We gotta put a hit on that guy.' … (Tyler) Sash did a great job hitting him early and he looked kind of dazed when he got up. I feel like that made a difference and he coughed it up."
So, I have to ask. If a helmet-to-helmet hit that happens in the heat of the game, be it accidental or deliberate, gets a player fined or suspended, why is it that a blatant plan of attack to cause harm to a player is not addressed by the NFL? I mean, these players have admitted that their goal was to give another player a concussion and get him out of the game? Why are people not calling foul?
Pittsburgh Steelers LB James Harrison has a history of helmet-to-helmet hits and on December 13th, he received a suspension from the NFL for a hit on Cleveland Browns QB Colt McCoy. I wrote a story back then how I didn't think a suspension was going to change the ways these players play the game and that more has to be done. This suspension is just one example of heat of the moment hits and suspensions. However, this case of targeting a player before the game even begins is just going way too far.
Whatever happened to sportsmanship? Is this type of dirty play really what the NFL has come to? While the NFL is spouting words about how player safety is their top priority and they are doing all they can to reduce the risk of concussions, they are not doing anything to call this type of behavior out? I am disgusted.
I have completely lost all respect for the New York Giants and, despite the fact the New England Patriots beat out my Denver Broncos, I will be cheering for them in the Super Bowl and hoping that the NFL punishes the Giants in some form. That type of play is just unacceptable. What is that teaching future generations of football players?
Deborah Braconnier is a former athlete and avid football fan. She is a freelance writer and Featured Contributor for the NFL and Olympics. She has followed the Denver Broncos since she was a child and can usually be found yelling at the television during football season. Follow her on Twitter at @fwcdeborah.
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