Morning Sports Update

Rodney Harrison shared an emotional message for football players dealing with head injuries

"I don’t want them to feel like me and so many other former players that had to deal with concussions."

Rodney Harrison
Rodney Harrison (right) and Jac Collinsworth (left) during a broadcast prior to the Buccaneers-Cowboys matchup earlier in the 2022 season. AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth

The Patriots lost to the Packers 27-24 in overtime on Sunday. New England managed to keep the game close despite being forced to play most of the afternoon with rookie third string quarterback Bailey Zappe, but Aaron Rodgers was, in the words of Bill Belichick, “too good.”

Also on Sunday, the Red Sox lost to the Blue Jays, 6-3. Boston now hosts the Rays in a three-game series starting tonight at 7:10 p.m. to close out the 2022 regular season.

Rodney Harrison’s comments about NFL players and head injuries: Following the scary scene from Week 4’s Thursday night football matchup between the Dolphins and Bengals in which Miami quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was stretchered off the field after sustaining a concussion, the league’s protocols for dealing with head injuries have been heavily scrutinized.

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One of the more prominent voices emerged in the form of former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison, who shared his thoughts prior to Sunday night’s game between the Chiefs and Buccaneers.

Harrison played 15 season in the NFL, and was known for his physicality as a defensive player. Reflecting on his time in football, Harrison acknowledged playing through circumstances where he should have been benched for safety reasons.

“I would get hit, the entire stadium is spinning around, and I would go back into the game,” Harrison said during the segment, speaking to co-host Maria Taylor. “It’s not worth it, Maria, and I would implore these young men, don’t go back on that football field if you get hurt because I don’t want them to feel like me and so many other former players that had to deal with concussions.

“Whether it’s depression, anxiety, paranoia, broken relationships, not being able to communicate with your spouse and things like that, it’s a lot,” he added. “CTE takes you to a dark place, and I want these players to know, it’s not worth it. Please take care of yourself. Don’t depend on the NFL. Don’t depend on anybody. If something’s wrong with your head, report it.”

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An NFL review of the decision to allow Tagovailoa to return to the Week 3 game against the Bills (and the subsequent decision to allow him to play in Week 4) is ongoing. The NFLPA, according to multiple reports, has exercised its right to fire the unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant who evaluated Tagovailoa during the game against Buffalo.

Trivia: Rodney Harrison eventually helped the Patriots win back-to-back Super Bowls during his career. In his rookie season, however, he lost in football’s biggest game. Can you name the (Hall of Fame) quarterback who Harrison lost to in Super Bowl XXIX?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: He played college football at BYU.

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On this day: In 1990, outfielder Tom Brunansky’s diving catch clinched the American League East title for the Red Sox on the final day of the season in a 3-1 win over the White Sox.

Daily highlight: Patrick Mahomes just doing Patrick Mahomes things in the Chiefs’ Sunday night win over the Buccaneers.

Trivia answer: Steve Young

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