Note to NFL receivers: If you’re running across the middle, and Zach Brown is looming, yes, he will try to take your head off.
The Washington Redskins linebacker left no doubt as to where he stands in the NFL’s ongoing player safety debate Monday when he proclaimed you shouldn’t play football if “(you) don’t wanna get hit or hurt.”
Brown, taking the defensive player point of view, started with this tweet.
It was an apparent response to Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams, who was concussed by a dirty hit from Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis on Sunday in the Panthers’ eventual win. It was the second time this season Adams has suffered a concussion from a dirty hit; Chicago Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan missed a game for his head shot on Adams earlier this season.
Brown has no time for Adams’ complaints, though, responding to a Pro Football Talk tweet about Adams’ concerns with this gem:
You’d probably like to see a little more sympathy for the fellow player and man from Brown, but he’s also not wrong about getting hit in football. It’s a physical game, and players will get hurt from time to time.
That being said, Adams’ frustration is warranted. He’s now suffered two head injuries from reckless hits. Not only does he have long-term health concerns, but Adams — one of the best young receivers in the NFL — is set to hit free agency this offseason and could be in for a career payday. Someone undoubtedly will pay him, but teams might be apprehensive as he now has a history of head injuries.
The NFL also is in a weird spot. The league admittedly has done more in recent years to promote player safety, and it’s got to be frustrating to see players take this stance. If the players aren’t willing to look out for each other, then the NFL kind of has its hands tied.
Then again, with the league continuing to lean hard on Thursday night games while also looking into lengthening the season, it’s hard to say its motives are 100 percent in line with the players.