Student Name Prof Hamilton ENGL 1302-72000 13 October 2022 CTE in the NFL Outline Introduction Thesis statement: This reading will examine the chronic brain

Student Name

Prof Hamilton ENGL 1302-72000

13 October 2022

CTE in the NFL

Outline

Introduction

Thesis statement: This reading will examine the chronic brain disease CTE and it’s many effects

on both society and the NFL.

1. Background of Topic

a. History of CTE and what it is

b. History of CTE in sports

c. History of CTE in the NFL specifically

11. Effects of the Topic on Society

a. Business Effects

1.. Positive: They make huge statistical and technological leaps to protect players ii. Negative: The NFL would be under fire and sued for mishandled cases

b. Effects on the Consumer

1. Positive: Awareness of the dangers of the game and that there are real health risks involved

2. Negative: Parents being turned off and not letting their children play football

111. Solution or Future Effects of Specific Problem

a. Business

1. Move forward with the new technology and regulations

b. Consumers

1. Learn the safe way to play football, invest in the right equipment, and know the risks of playing.

IV. Conclusion

Football is an amazing sport and the most popular in the U.S. Although this

sport is the heart of our country it’s important to keep in mind the risks involved. The

game has evolved over the years and is becoming safer by the minute. I hope that

people will be informed if interested in playing and that these risks don’t shy anyone

away from playing.

Student Name

Prof Hamilton ENGL 1302-72000

13 October 2022

CTE in the NFL

Touchdowns, trash-talking, big hits, and lots of money. Football is insanely popular in the Unites States and has been for years. People love watching and can bring in record-breaking numbers every year for the Super Bowl. Unfortunately, a big part of the game is injury. Some players spend north of $1 million on their body alone just to stay healthy. There are so many possibilities when it comes to injury as well. Broken bones, torn ligaments, and sprained joints happen very often. The main and most pressing Injury of today’s time is brain or head injury. It’s become a very pressing topic in the NFL and specifically the lasting effects of these head injuries. The worst of them all is CTE, by far.

Background of CTE

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, better known as CTE is a horrible brain disease. This disease degenerates your brain from within and can cut life expectancy in half. A protein in CTE named tau malfunctions and “causes other proteins to misfold and sets of a chain reaction” (McKee). This reaction slowly spreads across the brain and kills brain cells along the way. Although this disease has appeared in people as young as 17, most of the time, it is a result of repeated head trauma. The symptoms often include memory loss, suicidal thoughts, aggression, and depression. There seems to be a direct connection from sports players to CTE.

This disease has plagued contact sports since around 1928. Dr. Harrison Martland first found it in a group of boxers and referred to the disease as “punch drunk syndrome” (Smith). More cases of CTE popping up between the military and mostly sports. The repeated head trauma became a clear catalyst to this disease and all the effects along with it. Boxers seemed to be the first and only athletes to get this disease since obviously they are punching each other in the head for money. Later on, football started up and took over from there.

All anyone hears about today is the many injuries and catastrophes that happen from the NFL. According to an article from the New York Times, CTE grew to national concern around 2007 when a football player, Andre Waters, had brain damage and ultimately “led to his depression and death by suicide” (Shipgel). After this case broke out more started pouring in. CTE has been found in over 300 retired NFL players. The list goes on and on of players who committed suicide due to this horrible disease. To name a few, Junior Seau, Andre Waters, Dave Duerson, and Aaron Hernandez all committed suicide from having CTE. There are even recent players like Vincent Jackson, who retired in 2018, who was diagnosed with CTE after his death. This disease is a horrible thing that can be a result of playing football for an extended period of time. There are many effects both on the business and the consumers.

Effects of CTE

There was and is a massive effect on the NFL from the headlines with CTE and the poor players who lost their lives. Unfortunately, the NFL tried it’s best to cover everything up and day that the disease was not a direct result of football. They were eventually presented with overwhelming evidence to support that CTE was from football and gave in to a “$1 billion settlement of brain injury claims” (AP). Losing all that money and having the horrible press for the league really set them back. I would imagine their views went down as well for hiding trying to cover up these things which means an even bigger loss of money. This is a bad situation and a bad choice by the league, but there were a few good things that came out of it.

Some of the good things that came out of all the CTE matters for the NFL is that they are continuing to make better and better precautions and equipment. According to an article from the NFL’s website, they have made 47 rule changes to protect players, they now deploy 29 medical professionals on the sideline for each game, and better educate their professionals on concussions (Smith). The NFL has also invested millions of dollars in to finding the best and most safe helmets they can find. They are making huge strides in both technology and equipment that has lowered the risk and injuries in the NFL.

One of the main negative effects I thought when considering the consumers was with the parents. When parents hear about men dying before the turn 50 from playing football, it might discourage them from letting their kids play. Although there is a risk of injury, turning children away from the game is not the answer. Parents might become misinformed and flat out scared to let their kids play. This is a major negative effect because football is such a great game, and these cases are for mostly for adults who have been playing professionally. Hopefully, it doesn’t get to this point because it would be a major negative effect on parents and children.

On a positive note, the consumers will now be aware of the dangers of the game. Going back to the parents, now they will be aware of the risks involved in playing. No one is saying they shouldn’t allow their kids to play, but now they understand how the game works and the dangerous side of football. Also, with technology getting better every day, the next generation will have the best and most safe football equipment ever. The technology is helping improve not only equipment, but sports science, concussion protocols and knowledge of injury. There are things called guardian caps that are catching on that function as a second layer of protection that you strap on top of your helmet. These supposedly “reduce the G-force of a collision by up to 33%” (Beasley). These weren’t available until all this news came about and it will in turn make the game safer for the next generation.

Solutions to CTE

The main solution for the NFL is to be as forthright as they can be. Publish the numbers and the statistics of brain injuries and show the people they are going down. The NFL is going to have to trust the new technology and equipment if they want to make the game safer.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for CTE yet, but there are ways to eliminate risks. They need to be investing a lot of time and money into finding the best helmets and keep refining their rule book to protect the players and make the game safer.

The best solution for the consumers would be to instruct their kids properly. Learn the right way to play football with heads up tackles and smart plays. Investing in the right gear for your child is a great way to help ensure his safety. Above all, know the risks of the game. Whether it’s the NFL of Pee Wee football, there will always be risk. Be able to balance that and know that anything could happen, but to also encourage kids to play and try a new sport. These kids watching the NFL will learn a lot so, if the players stick to good clean football, so will they.

Football is an amazing sport and the most popular in the U.S. Although this sport is the heart of our country it’s important to keep in mind the risks involved. The game has evolved over the years and is becoming safer by the minute. The goal is to get people informed if interested in playing and that these risks don’t shy anyone away from playing. CTE is an extremely dangerous disease and unfortunately tied to playing football. It’s important to keep in mind the effects that CTE has on the NFL, it’s consumers, and the victims.

Works Cited

Beasley, Adam H. “Guardian Caps: The New Helmets Worn by Several NFL Teams.” Pro

Football Network, 29 Mar. 2022,

McKee, Anne. “Resource Center.” What Is CTE? I Concussion Legacy Foundation,

Press, Associated. “NFL to Halt ‘Race-Norming,’ Review Black Claims in $1 Billion Concussion

Settlement.” ESPN, ESPN Internet Ventures, 2 June 2021,

Shpigel, Ben. “What to Know about C.T.E. in Football.” The New York Times, The New York

Times, 16 Dec. 2021

Smith, Joseph. “NFL Issues Response to CTE Research Report.” NFL.com, NFL, 26 July 2017,

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