The turf at MetLife Stadium claimed another victim on Monday night as Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers suffered a torn Achilles just a few plays into his New York career.
NFL insider Jason La Canfora of the Audacy original podcast “In The Huddle” sounded off on the “shameful” owners that cut costs to play on turf rather than installing natural grass to protect their players.
“I think it is nothing short of shameful that these billionaires, who make hundreds of millions of dollars each year – hundreds of millions of dollars each year –, and who sell their teams for billions more than they bought them for,” La Canfora said (7:05 in player above). “It’s shameful that they won’t do a bare minimum, won’t do a modicum of what I would deem to be necessary things to protect their greatest assets, which are their players, by playing these games on God’s green grass and not these artificial surfaces that are built to save owners money.”
“That’s it. That’s why they exist. They exist to save owners money.”
La Canfora brings up a few good points. If owners are willing to pay so much for their players, why won’t they protect them in the same way?
There are European soccer clubs that have renovated their stadiums with natural grass surfaces. Stadiums across the country are required to install turf for the World Cup in 2026.
But for now, it all comes down to the bottom line.
“To make these stadiums as multi-purpose as possible to make their maintenance as cheap as possible to make them as usable as possible to make them as homogenized as possible so we don’t have to deal with individual things the way you would have to with grass,” La Canfora continued. “That’s it. That’s the purpose they serve.”
While today’s turf has improved exponentially from the thin layer of carpet on top of cement years ago, there is still a long way to go to get to where the field conditions should be.
“But you find a player who likes playing on ‘em. You find a coach who really thinks it makes sense. It doesn’t. Again, the Meadowlands, people have been complaining about it for years.”