Former NFL safety Rodney Harrison spoke about his own experiences of trying to play through concussion symptoms during his career — which happened before the NFL began to tighten its protocols.
“Number one, I would say, it’s not worth it [to play through it],” Harrison said. “I was that guy. I would get hit, the entire stadium is spinning around, and I would. Go back tino the game. It’s not worth it.
“I would implore these young men, don’t go back on that football field if you get hurt because I don’t want them to feel like me and so many other former players that had to deal with concussions, whether it’s depression, anxiety, paranoia, broken relationships, not being able to communicate with your spouse, things like that.
“CTE takes you to a dark place, and I want the players to know it’s not worth it. Please take care of yourself. Don’t depend on the NFL. Don’t depend on anybody. If something’s wrong with your head, report it.”
The Tagovailoa injury has created some controversy around the league, as many question if he should have been playing on Thursday night at all after what appeared to be concussion-like symptoms he experienced just four days prior.
The independent doctor who cleared Tagovailoa was dismissed by the NFLPA over the weekend after the union initiated an investigation into the Dolphins’ handling of the concussion protocol when Tagovailoa left Sunday’s game and later returned.
The NFL and NFLPA also released a joint statement on Sunday that modifications are indeed needed to enhance player safety.
There was another incident during Sunday night’s game between the Bucs and Chiefs involving Tampa Bay tight end Cameron Brate, who returned to the game after a collision, leading former NFL head coach and SNF analyst Tony Dungy to call out a “broken system.”