Open Letter to the NFL

Dear NFL Owners, Executives, Coaches, Players:

Billions are now reaped from television, commercials, fan viewing, sales of “merch.” Players make crazy millions that, frankly, dwarf and render pathetic the lives of we fans. Referees, for example, many with amusing Popeye muscles, make $205K for, what, a half year’s work?

As for you owners and execs…

Yet you fail to protect players with a simple, inexpensive addition to player training/regimen.

Perhaps too many have mere football background, too little general knowledge.


December 2023. Outstanding Houston Texans rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud was knocked backward by an onrushing lineman after making a pass. Standard quarterback occurrence. And for other players—pro, college, high school, down to peewee.

Result. Stroud’s back hit the turf hard, his head immediately following. Assisted off the field, he went into now-mandatory concussion protocol/testing.

He indeed had a concussion, resulting in being unable to play the following weekend, resulting in a far-diminished Texan team with a far-diminished outcome and far-diminished product for fan viewing.


Simple, inexpensive tweak in player training/prep that would make a BIG difference:

It’s from the second most popular sport in the world after soccer [the true “football?”]—judo!

(Not to be confused with karate, stylized martial arts form that judo “players” [judoka] consider just so much dance movement.)

Many, if not most concussions resulting from bodies hitting the ground, then heads, needn’t occur if only judo “breakfall” technique were incorporated into player training and regimen.

Implementation of breakfall by Stroud would easily have avoided his concussion(!!).


Concussions, effect:

For those who don’t know, repeat concussive events to the head can lead to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a progressive, fatal brain disease associated with repeated traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), including concussions and repeated blows to the head. Also associated with development of dementia.

CTE has been the cause of numerous ex NFL players suffering dementia and early death, and it was long ignored. Leading some players to commit suicide, others to ask in their wills that their brains be examined. For example, former NFL player Aaron Hernandez committed murder. Examination of his brain after he hanged himself in prison revealed a severe case of CTE.


Years of NFL ignorance, apathy, neglect, fault:

Note that CTE and present mandatory concussion protocol came about not as a result of investigation, awareness, concern on the part of the NFL. No! Only after extensive litigation brought against the NFL by the NFL Players Association—union!

This resulting from research efforts of African-born (NOBA!)* forensic pathologist, Dr. Bennet Omalu of Pittsburgh, who conducted an investigation of the brain of ex Pittsburgh Steelers Hall of Fame linebacker Mike Webster. (See 2015 movie “Concussion,” starring Will Smith as Dr. Omalu.)

*Non Original Black American. See Yowl Of OBAs and NOBAs.


Judo breakfall solution:

Wolf daughters spent many years in judo, eventually earning black belts.

Very first thing learned in order to avoid injury, especially to the head (concussion!), as being thrown hard to the ground, often spectacularly, is commonplace, is “breakfall.”

A relatively simple procedure, yet requiring numerous repetitions to be done correctly and, especially, reflexively when falling.


Upon perceiving one is going down, about to hit the ground, one learns to instantly, reflexively, depending upon which part of the body is likely to hit the ground, especially if full brunt is to occur to one’s back, head, shoulder, bring down right or left arm or both, palm(s) downward, at one’s side or away from the body IN A HARD SLAP!

Breaks force of impact. Head normally doesn’t strike the surface, or with far less force. Force to back, shoulder, side is considerably lessened.


Google the following search words for a demonstration of breakfall technique:

Judo + demonstration + breakfall + technique.


Easy, obvious, inexpensive!:

Hire judo instructors at the start of the season to drill all players—linemen included—to become reflexive implementing breakfall technique.

This should be required at all levels of football. Indeed, in other impact sports.



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