The NFL found itself in hot water again.
The league has been trying to weather one media storm after another.
Now one NFL team is under fire for an insane reason.
Everybody knows football is a violent game, especially at the NFL level where the players are bigger and faster.
However, there always seems to be shock and outrage when players suffer catastrophic injuries.
And the Miami Dolphins are now under the microscope after starting quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered what appeared to be a severe head injury.
During a Thursday Night Football matchup against The Cincinnati Bengals, Tagovailoa was flung to the ground while getting sacked, and his head slammed against the turf.
The hit caused his fingers to contort in grotesque fashion.
Soon after the hit, discussions began online about how the Dolphins and the NFL were to blame for Tagovailoa being out on the field.
That criticism stems from Tagovailoa suffering what appeared to be a separate head injury four days earlier.
To understand how Catastrophic Thurs Head Injury was to Dolphins QB #TuaTagovailoa
Watch his 1st injury from Sun & witness how his brain/body betray him after
Then watch the 2nd – JUST 4 DAYS LATER – & pay attention to his Hands & Fingers
This young man will never be the same. pic.twitter.com/kHSAe5gJ2K
— Michael Hustus (@HustusMichael) September 30, 2022
But a doctor cleared Tagovailoa to go back in the game with a supposed back injury, and the Dolphins won.
It’s difficult to blame a team for putting a player into the game if he was cleared by doctors.
However, the optics were so bad that the Dolphins and the league are in hot water.
The doctor who cleared Tagovailoa has been fired for supposedly mishandling protocols.
From Pro Football Talk:
“The official investigation regarding the decision to clear Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa remains pending. For now, however, the NFL Players Association has decided to take action. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the NFLPA has exercised its prerogative to terminate the Unaffiliated Neurotrauma Consultant involved in the decision to clear Tua to return to action. The concussion protocol provides that players who demonstrate gross motor instability may return only if the team physician, in consultation with the UNC, determines that the instability did not have a neurological cause.”
Several current and former players and coaches chimed in after the injury.
Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, who lost to the Dolphins 42-38 in a thriller in week two, said, “I couldn’t believe what I saw last Sunday…It was just something that was astonishing to see. I’ve been coaching for 40 years now, college in the NFL, almost 40, and I’ve never seen anything like it before. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.”
Former New York Jets head coach and current ESPN football analyst Rex Ryan said, “This is clearly from head trauma. That’s it, a concussion…I know what it looks like. We all know what it looks like. My answer is this, no way in hell I put my son back in that game. No way in hell. And you know what, no way in hell I put somebody else’s son back out there either.”
Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel said in response to the blowback, “I don’t think that an injury from last week made him fall the same way this week, but yeah, I do not have any, like absolutely zero patience for, or will ever put a player in position for them to be in harm’s way…That is not what I’m about at all, and no outcome of a game would ever influence me being responsible as the head coach of a football team.”
The investigation continues, and the media is looking for a dragon to slay.