The League

Josh Kirkendall

Josh Kirkendall

Lead blogger for

Expect a Football Fatality


When Carson Palmer said, "The truth of the matter is ... somebody is going to die here in the NFL. It's going to happen," you couldn't help but to pause. It was shocking. Did it ever dawn on you that it was even possible? The levels of safety the league implements today are extensive, focusing around the head specifically. But you can't deny Palmer's point of view; players are bigger, stronger, faster and hit harder. A receiver extends out for a reception and absorbs a helmet-to-helmet shot by hard-sitting strong safety.

Javan Camon, a 5-foot-11, 180 pound defensive back for the Daytona Beach Thunder of the World Indoor Football League, broke his neck in late February of 2007. When he went for the tackle, his helmet collided with the offensive player. Camon died later that night because of his football-related injury.

Injury has always been a risk for football players. The neck and head are extreme vulnerabilities. Despite all of the heavy padding, helmets and safety studies, the risk will never cease as long as the game is played the way it is. You have to believe that players will keep growing in size, quicker in speed, thus collisions will keep getting more violent. As unfortunate as it sounds, I believe Palmer is right. One day the NFL will experience a death on the field.

By Josh Kirkendall  |  September 9, 2009; 10:00 AM ET  | Category:  Cincinnati Bengals , Concussions , Fans , Medical , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Hasn't there already been a death in the NFL? I always considered football a low skill sport that was a just a hair above pro wrestling. Cheerleaders, half time shows, offensive lineman...
The other "violent" sport, hockey, is a skill game. Football is, but only at a few positions. Mostly, its a size game.

Posted by: billy8 | September 9, 2009 4:02 PM

Oh Billy...You are so right and so wrong in such a span of words.

Posted by: tttyler | September 11, 2009 8:58 AM

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