I think this is the best quote: "Both the league and the PA are mentioned because the issue of protecting the victim of a vicious hit with intent to injure should be as much the responsibility of the Players Association, as it is the league office, in fact more. The way the system is structured now, there is more of a fight by the association for the player being fined, than the one that may have left the game on a stretcher, and that just isn't right."
Bang on. The system the league has now is an embarassment. We've got a comissioner who is flat out afraid to issue suspensions for dirty play, because we'll just get a season ticket holder for the player's team to arbitrate and wipe out the suspension. Meanwhile we've got a PA that worries a lot about protecting dirty players, far more then it does about the guys whose careers were threatened (and sometimes ended) by those players.
Great commentary. I go a step further to state that there is ample evidence to show that the current situation is hardly accidental but by design through gross negligence for the sake of preserving "entertainment value" as in $$$$.
I can't speak enough on the CFL because I am a relatively new fan with a limited understanding of its history, so I'll speak to points relevant to most of professional gridiron football from the perspective of the NFL. For sake of safety matters at the very least, the leagues do also have an open line of communication as I understand.
The fundamental safety issue with regard to current better rules at least in the NFL, and what is missing down here at the very least little credible enforcement of them including no suspensions and ejections until all of a sudden now for such hits including some that were clean, is the same for players in all leagues of gridiron football.
At the very least down here the NFL has been lax in even getting to this point before the season started in passing the new rules as were better late than never IMHO.
Right now the NFL is years behind the curve in enforcement and education of the referees, coaches, and players and trying to catch-up with merely financial retaliation and a lot of PR as they fight the fires of Favre and public sentiment siding more with the players than with the owners for sake of the looming lockout. Quite simply Goodell et al are over their heads now for the first time since he took charge.
Should the likes of James Harrison and others retire as a financial consequence of this all due to poor clarity in rules and no consistency in enforcement of them down to the level of the penalty flags or no flags, I for one am far from the only fan who will take less interest in that game as it goes down the road of laughable double-talk cherry-picking officiating as we see dominant in the absolutely joke of a "sport" in the awful NBA.
Let's not forget that for no apparent reason other than for sake of preserving "entertainment" value for years, the NFL spent so much time finding any medical evidence to support inconclusive findings about the matter.
Now fast forward and here we are. This all is no accident but rather by grossly negligent design down here from as usual a few greedy bastards amongst the owners and NFL executives including especially as usual those in New York and Washington.
See the commentary in the concussion thread for more feedback that is applicable to all leagues too:
Take a page out of the Rugby laws and institute a "sin" bin. Anytime a player is guilty of any unecessary roughing penalty, have him stand in the endzone for the world to see while his team plays a man short for a set amount of plays.
I know the CFL would never do it but I guarantee, teams would be making darned sure nobody got away with UR.
Akin to the NHL too mind you ...10 minutes out of the game just like in rugby is a great disincentive as well when an ejection let alone a suspension are merited for only the wantonly grievous offenses (i.e. the clear punch by the BC defender of a Winnipeg player on the ground in that wacky game a few weeks ago, even if in retaliation for other foul play as was suspected)