NFL, NFLPA Determine Dolphins Did Not Follow Concussion Protocol When Matt Moore Almost Got Decapitated

This is a joke.

by Sean Newell
Jan 25 2017, 10:33pm

Do you remember when Steelers linebacker Bud Dupree attempted to separate Miami Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore's soul from his body in the divisional round of these playoffs? I remember that my first thought, after the hit, was whether Moore had died; I actually felt a little bit of relief to see him writhing on the ground afterwards. After a lengthy stoppage, Moore eventually got up and went to the sidelines, where he was checked out by Miami physicians and the league's independent neurological consultant; backup T.J. Yates entered the game. For one snap. Then Moore was back out on the field. Amazingly, Matt Moore needed no further evaluation.


Ah, that's the good stuff. Obviously Matt Moore needed more than just one snap off. I say obviously because I watched the hit in real time, when it happened. And then several more times via CBS replays, and then just for good measure I looked it up again today, just to make sure I was not misremembering how insanely violent it was. As you can see above, I was not misremembering. Matt Moore got destroyed, "absolutely walloped," as Jim Nantz so eloquently put it during the game, and somehow—somehow!—the physicians said he was all good a minute later. Who knows, though, maybe they didn't see the hit, or Matt Moore writhing on the ground in front Miami's bench, or maybe he went through a thorough examination without exhibit—

Ah, man. Missed the bleeding from the mouth, which as we all learned in med school is located just below your eyes, on your face, which doctors know is located on your head. That is, nowhere near where you'd need to be looking to evaluate a possible concussion.

The league also stressed that "there is no indication that competitive issues had an impact on the care that Mr. Moore received," even though it was a playoff game and Miami's only other option at quarterback was T.J. Fucking Yates, a guy they signed on December 13, after actual starter Ryan Tannehill got injured.

As punishment for this colossal fuck up, the Miami Dolphins may or may not have to go back to school, basically. The league and NFLPA sent a strongly worded letter to the team indicating that they had determined Miami did not follow the concussion protocol properly and "further advised the Dolphins that they must engage their staff in a full review of the Protocol and conduct additional education, if necessary."

This is obviously entirely toothless; what does "engage" mean? What is "additional education" and who determines "if" that additional education is "necessary?" That's hard to say. What's not hard to say is that there will be serious repercussions for this behavior that the NFL and the players' own union definitely take very seriously: monetary fines. Possibly.