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Concussions are one of the most hot-button topics in the NFL. From the Tua Tagovailoa situation earlier this season to Matthew Stafford’s wife saying she was “angry” about her husband’s head injuries, concussion issues are a problem for the league.
They are such a cause for concern that the league changed the concussion protocols in the middle of the season to prevent further problems like the one that happened with Tua.
How then, on Monday Night Football in front of a massive TV audience, do we still have situations like the one that occurred with Patriots wide receiver DeVante Parker?
Parker made a catch late in the first quarter and went hard to the ground, tackled by an Arizona Cardinals defender. Parker struggled to stand up after the hit and then wobbled to the side immediately after.
Despite that, no one stopped the game. In fact, the Patriots lined up to snap the ball with Parker still on the field. Parker couldn’t even get himself lined up properly.
It seems the only reason the next play didn’t occur with Parker still on the field was because of his teammate Nelson Agholor.
Where was the NFL’s concussion spotter?
The NFL has a designated concussion spotter for every game. That person’s job is to look for potential concussion symptoms and immediately stop play. The spotter is not affiliated with either team.
That means that Nelson Agholor could not conceivably be the designated concussion spotter for Monday Night Football. Yet, without him, Parker likely would have remained on the field.
The Patriots later ruled DeVante Parker out of Monday Night Football with a head injury. There is nothing definitive on him being the league’s concussion protocol. But it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that a guy who couldn’t stand up straight is likely being evaluated for a concussion.
Why it was teammate Nelson Agholor alerting the world to this issue is not a good look for the NFL.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on Twitter: @OutkickDanZ