There’s no denying that football is currently a dangerous game, especially for young players. It’s time to do something about football safety. Here are five basic practices we can use to make the sport safer for children, as well as three fundamental ways we can make it much more dangerous for them.
1. Require children who suffer concussions to sit out at least two games: In many youth football leagues, players who suffer concussions are put right back on the field without being given sufficient time to recover from their injury. It’s absolutely essential that concussed children are allowed to heal without being subjected to further head trauma.
2. Teach kids safer tackling and blocking techniques: Contact is a fundamental part of football. We can’t avoid that, but we can teach young players safe techniques for tackling and blocking that emphasize protecting their head from trauma. This will also safeguard them from more severe long-term injuries down the line.
3. Create a rule specifying that a play is not over until the player carrying the ball is unconscious for 10 seconds: In order to make football more hazardous and potentially deadly, we must institute a rule requiring defenders to knock the ball carrier completely unconscious for 10 seconds. To ensure that the game of football is unsafe for all our children, we will have to remind young players to knock out their opponents by any means, including with blunt instruments such as rocks and hammers.
4. Create stricter equipment safety requirements: Holding the companies that manufacture football equipment to higher standards of safety and reliability will help prevent all sorts of injuries to young players.
5. Introduce helmets that absorb and conduct heat at incredible rates: Parents and officials who care about making youth football into a total deathtrap must work to replace the helmets currently available to children with helmets made of heat-conducting materials, such as pure copper or 24-karat gold, that will rapidly grow scalding hot in sunlight. This will ensure that young athletes’ heads are encased in what basically amount to portable ovens as they play football, dramatically increasing the chance that they will be literally cooked alive during games.
6. Enforce harsher punishments on coaches who fail to report player concussions: Coaches often fail to report a young player’s concussion because they seem “healthy enough” to continue playing. This puts children at a tremendous risk, and youth leagues should begin enforcing strict regulations about reporting concussions and severely punish any coach who fails to comply.
7. Place every end zone directly between a mother bear and her cub: Look, it’s just common sense. Positioning all regulation end zones in between a mother bear and her cub will ensure that every time a child scores a touchdown they’ll end up standing between the two bears, causing the mother to become frantic and maul the young football player with all of her furious strength. We’ll never have truly dangerous football until we accomplish this.
8. Make sure kids undergo a thorough medical examination before allowing them to play football: This should be an obvious safety precaution to help protect our young athletes. If a child isn’t in sufficient physical condition to play a sport as demanding as football, then for their own safety, they cannot be allowed on the field.