On Friday, Bruce Arians, the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, made some comments to a group of high school football coaches. Arians told them that football is under attack. He says that those coaching the sport need to reach out to mothers with the message that football is safe for their sons to play.
“We feel like this is our sport. It’s being attacked, and we got to stop it at the grass roots,” he said. “It’s the best game that’s ever been f—— invented, and we got to make sure that moms get the message, because that’s who’s afraid of our game right now. It’s not dads, it’s moms.”
Arians also addressed hitting in football. He says it’s “our job … to make sure the game is safe, at all levels” and the primary message must be that “the head really has no business being in the game.”
He’s since done some backtracking on the comments, which were recorded by a news outlet.
Just to clear up any misinterpretations, this is my view about football and moms pic.twitter.com/67zGKRyXiK
— Bruce Arians (@BruceArians) April 10, 2016
Anybody who has ever seen a football knows it’s dangerous. There is no use pretending like it’s not. The studies on athletes and CTE are still in infancy so just how serious the risks truly are is still unknown. Each time a football player steps on the field, he or she is taking a risk and knows it.
J.J. Watt of the Houston Texans recently addressed head injuries in football. He says he’s accepting the risk to do the job he loves.
Watt says that nobody goes into football thinking it is safe (except kids put in by their parents, maybe):
“While we are all learning a lot about and do understand there are serious implications that come with it, I don’t think any of us got into this game thinking we were not going to hit in our heads,” Watt said.
“I know for a fact that every time I go out to practice I am going to hit my head. It’s just like a firefighter knows he may have to go into a fire at some point, or a soldier knows he may get shot at some point,” Watt said.
You do everything you can to make sure that you are safe and that you are sound, but I’m not going to pretend that I didn’t know that was a possibility.”