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Monday, January 27, 2014
NFLN survey/player safety: Patriots

By Mike Reiss

I wasn't surprised when the results of the NFL Nation Confidential survey came in so decisively on the following question: True or false, would you play in the Super Bowl if you knew you had a concussion?

True: 272
False: 48

It reminds us of the importance of having someone to look out for players' best interests, which is where this issue has trended in recent years.

I think back to each time a Patriots player left a game with a head injury during the 2013 season, and the caution that was taken each time -- not just for that game, but in the ensuing week. One of the most recent was safety Devin McCourty, who was knocked out of the Dec. 22 Ravens game and then didn't play in the season finale Dec. 29.

If a player breaks his arm, like Rodney Harrison did in Super Bowl XXXVIII, it's easier for the player to accept why he can't finish the game. In fact, Harrison's toughness was widely lauded as he stayed on the field for one additional play after suffering the break.

A concussion is a different story for many players, as the results of the survey remind us.