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USA Today

The NFL Might Get Rid Of Punt And Kick Returns

March 22, 2018

It's widely accepted that kick off and punt returns are the most dangerous plays in Football. Kick returns often involve some of the worst collisions and injuries. Kick off and punt returns allow players to run long enough to reach top speeds before colliding head on with another player. 

We've already seen several little league, middle, and high school programs cut special teams all together. Concussions and the resulting CTE (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy), not to mention this seasons particularly brutal and frequent injuries, have raised enormous concern for the safety of players.

It looks like the NFL is finally begriming to acknowledge the growing problem, and have begun to discuss possible solutions. They're a couple years late to the party but at least we're getting some possible solutions...

While outside companies work on safer and better helmets and padding, the NFL is considering removing some of the more dangerous parts of the game, namely kick and punt returns. In a recent interview on the Dan Patrick Show, NFL VP of Operations, Troy Vincent, discussed the possible removal of kick off return. Vincent talked about medical teams investigating the contact involved in the play.

Vincent, a self proclaimed "traditionalist," suggested that removal of kick off and punt returns would, for lack of a better word, ruin the game. He went on to say there will be more discursions in the future. Vincent ended the interview by stressing that complete removal of special teams isn't the only option, however he said the NFL must find a way to mitigate the extreme level of soft tissue and neurological damage plaguing the game.

Via Barstool