With Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck suffering a concussion, it begs the question of who’s to blame.
Surely, there’s a scapegoat. [Cue: The flaming torches and pitchforks]
There’s no question that football itself is an inherently physically violent sport, which alone has concussed many, many players throughout its storied history.
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Nevertheless, critics of the Colts front office are already quick to point fingers at the offensive line, as Luck has been speculated to be concussed on this early 4th quarter sack with 11:46 left in the game due to a breakdown in pass protection–as his helmet violently hit the Lucas Oil turf:
Oct 30, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith (11) leaves the field after sustaining a concussion during their game against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports
“If you hit that ground, sometimes if you hit the ground and your head hits the grass, maybe it gives,” said Kansas City Chiefs veteran pass rusher Tamba Hali of a normal playing surface. “This one (Lucas Oil Stadium’s), you’re hitting concrete. So every time your head hits concrete, you’re sure to probably get a little bit of concussion.”
“It’s a fast surface, it’s a thin surface,” added Chiefs safety Eric Berry. “It’s not the thick turf that you’re probably used to seeing.”
It’s worth noting that their starting running back Spencer Ware was also forced from that game with a concussion, although it’s unclear when exactly his head injury occurred.
Nov 20, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck(12) walks off the field after the Colts defeated the Titans, 24-17 at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports
To be fair though, I’m no doctor, but if 6’4″, 314 pound, Titans rookie nose tackle Austin Johnson is hitting a player at full force and throwing all of his weight around in the process during a ‘turf takedown’, that player could very well even sustain a head injury realistically playing on pillows.
Nevertheless, it’s worth noting that the Lucas Oil FieldTurf has been recently regarded as ‘ruthless’, as it relates to dealing concussions to players who have hit their helmets hard on its playing surface–including now the Colts very own Andrew Luck.