Tua’s Concussion: What Went Wrong?


Photo by Jean-Daniel Francoeur: https://www.pexels.com/photo/selective-focus-close-up-photo-of-brown-wilson-pigskin-football-on-green-grass-2570139/

The Miami Dolphins lost to Tua Tagovailoa. Point blank, no way around it.

All the evidence that you need is in the fact that the unaffiliated doctor who cleared Tua to play after Sunday’s stumble in the game against the Bills has been fired.

In last Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills, late in the second quarter, Tua hit the back of his head on the turf. After this hit, he stood up and tried to “shake the cobwebs” off his head, and a few steps later collapsed to his knees after his legs gave out.

The whole world watched him stumble and fall, and yet he was back in the game and played the whole second half; when everything about the situation screamed concussion.

Yet, the Dolphins placed him under a back injury. This injury labeling loophole allowed him to avoid the concussion protocol, thus he was able to play in Thursday’s game against Cincinnati.

Before that game against the Bengals, Dr.Chris Nowinski stated that if Tua were to play and suffer another concussion, he would be risking severe brain trauma that could affect his season, his career, and his life after football. Not one hour after this tweet was sent, he suffered a major concussion after he, again, hit the back of his head against the turf.

The trauma was so violent that it caused his hands to go into the ”fencing position”, and he was knocked unconscious, leaving the field in a neck and head injury stretcher.

He showed no signs of any movement and was not cleared until he reached the University of Cincinnati Hospital.

At some point, the NFL is going to have to start taking player safety seriously and not just parade it as something that they care deeply about. The NFL spends more time enforcing uniform and celebration policies than they do player safety.

Also, this Sunday, Cardinals edge rusher JJ Watt announced that earlier in the week he went into AFib, and had his heart shocked back into rhythm on Thursday, but played on Sunday.

Player safety as it stands right now is a joke to the NFL until they do something about it. They only parade and use it to garner positive attention and buy-in from players.

Everyone, myself included, hope that we are wrong, but it seems that Tua has suffered a major brain injury due to a concussion, followed by another concussion. His career and his life after football may be altered by this in an era where we know more about CTE every year.

Everyone involved in the Dolphins organization who looked at Tua and thought he should play should be fired.

This is a bad look for an organization whose owner is already suspended until October for racial inequalities against Brian Flores and tampering.