Neck / Head injuries

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There’s good and bad news when it comes to the status of Riders fullback Scott McHenry.

The team announced on Monday that McHenry suffered a neck injury during Sunday’s game against the B.C. Lions. McHenry was hurt covering a kick-return in the second half, he was able to walk off on his own but did not return. After the game, McHenry was seen in a neck brace leaving the stadium in an ambulance where he was taken to hospital.

Officially, McHenry has been diagnosed with a stable, undisplaced fracture involving the sixth cervical vertebrae.

The good news is McHenry was released from hospital, and is expected to recover, though the team didn’t provide any timeline for that to happen. McHenry also is said to have no neurological symptoms.

McHenry travled back with the team on Monday.

I knew as soon as that hit happened he was likely going to have a vertebrae injury, as I am sure many did. This goes back onto 2 things:
  • look at the belt buckle when tackling...head up
  • leading with the crown as the ball carrier

I have actually been talking about this most of the season with many friends and felt it was only a matter of time before someone was hurt seriously. This was by no means a dirty hit by either party, but the NFL has taken measures to minimize these injuries and it is time the CFL does to. Leading with the crown is on the rise...huge. You see it several times a game where the runner stoops to waist height leaning forward and charges. It needs to stop! It has always been around, but it seems magnified this year. I see it a few times per game and get frustrated...if the defender contacts crown first it is a penalty...why not when the runner does?

I am only signalling this one out because it was so serious...but this has been waiting to happen. I don't know why there is an it just how kids are being trained coming up now (brutal), is it a subconscious thing where they know they might draw a flag (no way intentional IMO), something else.

It is time for the league to step in and make a rule change...IMO mid-season, but at minimum at the end of the season. When 2 crowns meet head on, bad things are going to happen.

I agree with this. Head up bars forward, tacklers and tacklees. Football is dangerous enough. Careless technique like this will only lead to more injuries and more serious injuries.

This precise issue is close to the heart of Angus Reid. He is on our local radio station here regularly and is quite passionate about coaching proper technique to prevent/lessen injuries whenever the subject comes up. Head up, spine neutral.

... and get well Chewie! :thup:

yup...when I was in Peewee ball it started tackled head down you got sat. I tend to think there are just not enough coaches at the beginning ranks that teach fundamentals that stick with players forever...too many are just more focused on drills and strategy and developing in your face tangibles, thus ignoring head up, squaring the body, the belt buckle never lies, small ball big ball, etc. It is a shame.

Reid also believes that kids should be taught to hit younger. He believes that waiting until the kids are 11 or 12 years old to put on pads is too late. By then the bodies are big enough to do real damage, and also this is the age when kids grow at different rates causing mismatches. They are then suddenly turned loose to do damage with little to no technique.

The rules are already in place...the players, especially those BS DB's that come up from the States for three games need to respect them instead taking those cheap shot dives into the pile.

You mean like Levi Steinauer and Craig Butler?

Every team's got 'em. When I played ball we used to call the DB's the "pile-jumpers". Still fits....


It's not is all players...well, most players.

Also, news to me that not leading with the crown was a rule. When did that come in? I've sure never noticed it getting called. As far as I know it is only available to be called on defenders, not in the NFL

In fact, when the ball carrier leads with his head, using it as a battering ram, especially when a defender's head is already down (the "defenceless position") that's a UR as well. It's called "butt blocking" and is the offensive version of spearing.