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Sunday, December 11, 2011
NFL needs to take action on Browns' error

By Jamison Hensley

While there's been a lot of attention directed at how the NFL should discipline James Harrison, the real concern should be how the Browns mishandled Colt McCoy's situation after that hit by Harrison.

McCoy
McCoy
McCoy was allowed to return to the game only two plays after taking a helmet-to-helmet hit. Yes, two plays. That's not enough time to get a drink of water, much less see if a player is cognizant enough to come back to the game.

If you watched how McCoy laid on the ground after the hit and walked to the sideline, anyone with or without a medical degree could see he suffered head trauma.

A source told ESPN's Chris Mortensen that there is a medical review by the NFL and NFL Players Association for the Browns' "blatant system failure" during Thursday night's game. The source said this could serve as a catalyst for assigning an independent neurologist to each game in the future.

Browns coach Pat Shurmur said Friday he was confident the team's medical staff followed the NFL's strict guidelines on head injuries and said McCoy told him on the sideline that he was ready to go back into the game.

But that's the problem. Players who suffer head trauma aren't thinking clearly. You can't allow players or coaches to make that call. It's a mistake that the NFL can't allow to happen again.