The solution offered by both, the former Chicago Bear, head coach Mike Ditka and current Penn State head coach, Joe Paterno seems insane on the surface because that’s precisely what it is—insane!
The logic is sound enough: if you take away the armor that shields the defender from possible harm, then he will think twice about how he approaches his tackle. After all, in this day of big egos trying to make it in other avenues besides football (television, movies, and music), who wants a jacked up face or a misaligned set of teeth?
Well, most players in today’s game aren’t always thinking about the consequences of a hit, but rather the hit itself. They won’t mind taking the risk, of slight pain or injury, if they feel it’s going to be worth it in the end.
Even more, there are plenty of grudges in the NFL. There would be a section of guys who would just love to get a big lick on the quarterback that’s always annoyed them or beat their team.
Think about it, how many guys would love to get a big hit on pretty boy, Tom Brady or endless pitchman, Peyton Manning? You think Ray Lewis would dismiss the opportunity to show Carson Palmer how he really feels?…Just putting that out there.
Removing the helmets might change the approach for some but, for others, it would present a challenge and make them more creative as far as how they could still get the hit without causing too much bodily harm to themselves. Either way, removing the face guard would do, relatively, little to curb the violent hitting behavior we see on the football field.
What say you?