There was much discussion after last week’s season opener between the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos because of the amount of big hits Cam Newton took to the head. Newton never went through concussion protocol, despite showing signs of head injury.
So this Thursday, when the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets were facing off, Tyrod Taylor took a helmet-to-helmet hit, and was forced into concussion protocol by head official Ed Hochuli.
NFL finally following concussion protocol. Tyrod Taylor taken off after helmet-to-helmet sandwich pic.twitter.com/deCsBSJcIx
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) September 16, 2016
Taylor was evaluated for a concussion on the sideline, and was cleared to return to the game after just two plays.
Taylor was arguing with Hochuli, stating his case that he shouldn’t have to come out of the game. But it’s safe to assume that the officials were not going to take a chance after what happened last week to Newton.
This will undoubtedly be something to look for moving forward. Typically we don’t see referees have players tested for concussions, but this is a part of the changing NFL culture. Whether the safety of players is a real concern or not, the perception that the NFL wants to portray would certainly have prompted Hochuli to do what he did tonight in pulling Taylor from the game.