Colts wide receiver Austin Collie suffered three concussions last season before he was eventually placed on injured reserve Dec. 22, days after he was knocked out a game against the Jaguars.
In May, Collie told the Indianapolis Star that he was feeling good and had no plans to retire. On Wednesday, Collie appeared on KHTK to discuss -- what else -- concussions. When asked what it was like running patterns across the middle with all the head injuries in the league last year, Collie was frank.
“I think I have kind of put that behind me. I don’t like to dwell on it too much just because it can affect your play going across the middle and catching another ball," he said, according to Sports Radio Interviews. "You don’t want things like that popping up in your mind. I try to ignore any thought I do have of it. I don’t want to watch it. People want to show me and ask how I felt during that time and what not. I just kind of brush it aside because it is one of those things that it is in the past and it’s unfortunate. I was unlucky, but I’m just looking forward to this next season and getting on with it.”
Collie, 25, was then asked if concussions scared him at this point in his career. “Not really," he said. "If it was one of those things that I had a history of concussions and now I’m getting worse or more-and-more frequent then it would definitely be a worry of mine in the near future, but I’ve known players who play with nine or 10 concussions and who have lived on to have successful careers and haven’t had any symptoms later on in life, so again everyone is different. Everyone handles each injury different and hopefully down the road it’ll be perfectly fine."
Just hearing Collie mention "nine or 10 concussions" makes us uncomfortable. Especially in light of what the New Yorker's Malcolm Gladwell wrote in October 2009:
|Price of concussions|
"This is a crucial point. Much of the attention in the football world in the past few years has been on concussions — on diagnosing, managing and preventing them — and on figuring out how many concussions a player can have before he should call it quits. But a football player’s real issue isn’t simply with repetitive concussive trauma. It is, as the concussion specialist Robert Cantu argues, with repetitive subconcussive trauma. It’s not just the handful of big hits that matter. It’s lots of little hits, too."
You'd think it would be reason enough to mandate that all players wear the safest helmets currently manufactured, and to never again speak of an 18-game schedule.
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