Former Buckeye standout Terrelle Pryor saw his newfound NFL success hit a wall on Monday night in the Raider’s loss to the Broncos. Pryor suffered a concussion on a hit from linebacker Wesley Woodyard, but didn’t leave the game right away. Rather, Pryor stayed in the game for two more plays before being taken the sideline and later admitting he doesn’t even remember the game. The controversy began once the NFLPA got involved and questioned whether proper concussion protocol was followed.
The NFL’s concussion policy is one of the most strict and specific. Beginning with baseline testing in the offseason, player’s attributes such as balance and concentration are tested to measure where a healthy player’s brain is functioning at. The in game policy is very on point, insisting that team’s pull players that show any sort of symptoms whatsoever (passing out, dizziness, blurred vision, etc.) and be taken directly to the locker room. Following that, there is a six level procedure which indicates whether a player should return to play. If team doctors or trainers suspect concussion symptoms, they repeat many of the baseline tests, such as testing orientation and focus. Once a player has been deemed ineligible to return to the game, there is an even stricter protocol put in place to determine when he can return to practice.
Clearly there was a fault in this process during Monday night’s game, as Pryor continued to play. The NFLPA is also looking into whether or not sideline procedure was followed or not, as evidence is showing that he never met with a team doctor or spoke with coach Dennis Allen. Evidence has also shown that concussions can develop from smaller trauma as the game processes, so the failed protocol (if proven that Oakland did indeed fail) could have a crippling effect on Pryor’s breakout season. For all Pryor news and updates, keep posted with scarletandgame.com!