NFL Players Association medical director Thom Mayer cites a failure of communication, after the Philadelphia Eagles coach faced scrutiny for returning Kevin Kolb and Stewart Bradley to play following a head injury. Bradley and Kolb did not pass concussion tests on Wednesday, but have made progress according to Coach Reid.
Coach Reid admits he did not see Bradley stagger and fall after a brutal takedown caused by Ernie Sims during the game against the Green Bay Packers. After Stewart’s hit, fans, media and game announcers, all believed Bradley was out for the game. To everyone’s surprise, he returned to the game four plays later.
According to Reid, the team doctors examined both Kolb and Bradley and concluded they experienced a hard hit but did not have concussions. Reid maintains that both he and all associated with the Philadelphia Eagles followed the return to play concussion guidelines. Reportedly, no one who was a part of Bradley’s treatment saw him staggering and unable to regroup after the hit.
Mayer agrees that the guidelines were followed by the Philadelphia Eagles but stated, “Apparently, the Eagles’ trainers and team physicians didn’t see Bradley’s hit, and I’m not sure it was communicated clearly to them that he had struggled to get up and had fallen back down; that probably should’ve been communicated to them.”
After returning, Bradley began exhibiting concussion like symptoms and was sidelined for the remainder of the game. Although Coach Reid would not disclose details of the symptoms, Mayer said, “It turns out that he later had amnesia for the event, so that’s part of the reason he was pulled from the game.”
The NFL has become more stringent on proper treatment for head injuries following reports of the link between NFL players and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
In addition to Kolb and Bradley, Kevin Boss, New York Giants Tight End and Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford have all suffered concussions since the beginning of the 2010 season.
Since Kolb is not clear to play against the Detroit Lions on September 19. Michael Vick will take the field as starting quarterback. This will be his first starting game in over 45 months.