A former NFL executive and former president of the National Football League Players Association said Thursday the league should drop its concussion protocol.
A memo written by former league vice president of football operations Troy Vincent was published in The Wall Street Journal and detailed concerns from the NFLPA about the NFL’s concussion protocol that were outlined in a letter signed by more than 50 NFL players in May.
The players’ letter said the league’s concussion protocols are too complex and often fail to adequately address players’ physical and mental health issues.
In an interview with the Journal, Vincent, who was also the NFLSA’s president for three years from 2014-2016, said the protocols need to be simplified, while also protecting the players’ health and safety.
“The protocols that we have to go through, they’re not very good,” Vincent said.
“It’s a complex protocol and they need to get simpler.”
Vincent said he was surprised the NFL did not include more specific information in its protocol, citing “conflicting data.”
He said he has met with several NFL players who said they felt the protocols were confusing, and he said he had not heard back from the league.
Vincent was also a co-founder of the Players Health Protection Coalition, which pushed for the NFL to adopt a policy that would allow players to report concussions if they were experiencing symptoms, and also for the league to allow the league office to conduct the investigation and determine whether a player had a concussion.NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said he supports the players stance on concussion protocols, and said the protocol should be simplified and included in the league protocols.
Vince said the NFL has done an excellent job with concussions, and that there are still many more cases of head trauma.
“There’s so many more concussions and so many kids that have been impacted by the concussion protocol,” he said.
V.P. of the league communications Marc Trestman said that the league was working on the memo, and would be sending it to the players.
Vincents letter was addressed to Goodell, but he did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment.
The NFLPA did not respond to a request for comment on its stance on the players letter.