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Rival Report 2/1: Concussions are not top injury concern to NFL players according to survey

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Associated Press surveyed 100 NFL players about what their chief medical concerns were from playing football. The responses are a little surprising because it turns out that the top concern among the players is not about the brain injuries they could be inflicting on themselves.

The results showed that 39 out of the 100 players were more concerned with concussions over other injuries, while 20 were more concerned with the other injuries over concussions, 41 were equaling concerned with the concussions and other injuries. It seems to be a running theory that players are more concerned with their injuries that affect how many weeks they miss over the long term effects from concussions.

The short sightedness of the players is a little concerning but also somewhat understandable. After all, concussions often only keep players out for a week or 2 while blowing out a knee or some other injuries often leave the player out for as much as a year or more. The concussion effects are things that come after they are done playing football most the time, but the other injuries are things that can affect how much they are able to make on their career as a football player.

Money is power, and playing more games often means more of that money and power. It's hard to say whether the lack of concerns in post playing career symptoms from brain injuries is based more in being naive about the dangers or if it's a conscious sacrifice for the most money they can make on their careers. Either way it is a little sad that these players are not fully considering the brain injuries that could be crippling once their playing days are through.

The one thing this survey also shows is that many players are more concerned with whether team doctors are truly there for them or if they are just doing what they have to do to get them playing again the fastest. The trust between the players and the doctors is clearly severed with only 47 of the 100 players surveyed saying they believe the doctors and coaches have the players best interests in heart.

The clear conflict of interest between a player missing time to fully heal or being brought back earlier to help the team more despite not being completely healed is pretty self evident. Winning is everything in the NFL, and it's often the difference between these coaches and doctors (and players) continuing to be employed or not.

That is an entirely different can of worms, but I would think with these survey results that you should see more players seeking outside opinions than ever before. If it was me playing for these people I would only trust them with my life so much while making sure to get 2nd opinions on serious matters. The more stories like these make the mainstream media the more we should see players making the logical opinion to double check the advice they are receiving from the doctors and coaches they clearly are losing trust in.

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