The Pro Football Concussion Report

A Fan's Look at Head Injuries and the Concussion Crisis in Football

McElroy never played again after Jets concussion

Greg McElroy was sacked 11 times in his only NFL start  (AP)
Greg McElroy was sacked 11 times in his only NFL start (AP)

04.09.14

Two weeks ago, Greg McElroy announced his retirement from football after 3 seasons. Actually though, the last regular season game he ever played in was with the Jets in 2012 when he was sacked 11 times and suffered a concussion that was not revealed until four days later.  

In his only professional start, for the Jets against the San Diego Chargers December 23, 2012, McElroy was sacked 11 times and according to media reports, none of the Jets medical staff or coaches ever noticed anything wrong with his head.  Several days later, McElroy admitted that he had suffered a concussion during the game. He didn’t play his following scheduled start and was cut by the Jets during the 2013 preseason.

McElroy’s career trajectory kind of follows that of Colt McCoy. Playing for the Cleveland Browns against the Pittsburgh Steelers on December 8, 2011, McCoy suffered a concussion on a blast of a hit from linebacker James Harrison.  Although Harrison was fined for the vicious hit, once Cleveland team medical staff was able to get McCoy upright they examined his hand and had no idea he had suffered a concussion. Like McElroy, McCoy was able to return to play in the game despite having suffered a brain injury. Later, Browns team president Mike Holmgren defended his medical staff’s inability to spot a concussion.

 

“Our medical staff and our training staff, they are the best in football,” Holmgren said. “These guys are really good . . . when the injury took place on the field, at that time the question came up, did the doctors see the impact on the play? They did not. And our trainers did not. They were all working, as is typical in a game. They were working on other injured players in the bench area or behind players. So they did not see the play.”

 

McCoy has only had 18 passing attempts since the Harrison hit 2 seasons ago. He was traded by the Browns following the 2012 season in which he got into 3 games, spent last year with the 49ers and threw 1 pass for 13 yards. The Washington Redskins announced that they recently signed McCoy to a 2014 contact that included a $65,000 signing bonus.

Some suggest that another college star, Tim Tebow’s football career may have been sidetracked by a concussion. Tebow was knocked out in a 2009 Florida versus Kentucky game.

He was never the same after that terrible concussion he suffered at Kentucky in 2009.

~ blogger RSemmes on BamaOnLine

 

Perhaps it’s a coincidence but McElroy, McCoy, and arguably Tim Tebow were never really the same quarterback after their concussions. Are these football brain injuries more significant than previously thought? Although not immediately appearing as Alzheimer’s or ALS or Parkinson’s, are quarterback concussions leading to a swift diminishing of ability and eventual demise of once promising NFL careers?

 

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