Ban FB facemasks to get rid of head shots?

Anyone think that idea would work? I know the chances of it happening are very low. The idea is players would not want to risk smashing their face without a facemask. Of course for many years helmets did not have facemasks.

But not all head shots are intentional.

It’s an idea that would kill football as we know it. While you might imagine that to be a good thing, people watch the game largely because of its violence and gladiatorial nature. The players know it, too, which is why they all go for the so-called big hit, in some cases completely ignoring fundamentals to do so.

Take the inherent violence of the game away and you might as well turn the NFL into a rugby or Aussie Rules league as there will be little to distinguish it from the two. Take away the facemask and you’ll also have to get rid of the shoulder pads to protect players’ faces (see Brett Favre’s injury last weekend), and then you’ll have what is essentially a backyard tackle game. If I wanted to see that I could go to the nearest park and watch the kids play, it would be no less ferocious and the kids don’t have enough mass to hurt each other.

People have talked about banning helmets for a while but that won’t happen either.

It’s been said before but the violence is worse now that players are bigger and faster. They want to keep violence but they also don’t want to have a lot of players injured, possibly ending their career.

Career ending is one thing. Death is entirely another.

All this crap about “remove the facemasks” or “go back to leather helmets” is knee-jerk idiocy. You know what happened when football was played without facemasks and leather helmets? People died.

From here:

Bolding mine

Note that the reduction in deaths coincides with the invention and implementation of the modern suspension helmet. Leather helmets got people killed on a regular basis. The 60s helmet was just a molded plastic shell and people died.

The long-term effects of playing the game are certainly [potentially] horrific, however we are talking about an infinitesimally small percentage of the population who are genuinely at risk for them (those who will play football the longest i.e. professional players) and are participating in the activity voluntarily under direct supervision in a controlled environment.

Lumberjacks and fishermen get less consideration.

A big name player being injured is normally what causes more safety.

Dale Earnhardt died in 2001 and all of a sudden NASCAR was big on safety. Drivers could not get the HANS device fast enough after he died. Before that almost nobody in NASCAR wore one. Other racing series such as F1 or IRL were much more into safety than NASCAR in 2001.

I read the OP earlier today when there were no replies, and it took me forever to figure out why you needed helmets for FaceBook. Would it have killed you to have written out “football”?

Obviously, people familiar with sports would have made the connection immediately, but not all of us think in those terms. An additional six letters would have been a big help.

Yeah, I know, this is nitpicking, but I really was confused for a bit.

I guess since I don’t use Facebook I only see one meaning for FB. :slight_smile: I would change it now but they don’t allow it.

Actually, it wasn’t so much that I saw FB and immediately thought “FaceBook”, more like I saw FB, didn’t immediately get the abbreviation, and tried to think what it stood for. Facebook was the only thing that came to mind, but I was pretty sure that wasn’t it.

It wasn’t until much later that “football” came to mind.

Let’s not pretend that people aren’t killed and paralyzed now. And I suspect that the decline in the death rate is attributable almost entirely to improved medical care, particularly emergency and trauma care.

In fact, I think the sport would be safer without helmets, but there we’re taking about a radically different game. I think if you want to keep the current game, you’re talking about improved helmets, and penalizing vicious blows to the head the same way the taking of steroids is penalized. Those two things might help, incrementally. But fundamentally, football is an abattoir – take it as such, our leave it. I’ve opted for the latter, myself.

Thank you! I was thinking “Full Back? Full-Bore? Full-Body?”, none of which made sense! Football is one word! Better still, call it “Gridiron” so that us Brits stay out of it :).