Bruce Arians says football is ‘being attacked’ and he blames moms – CBSSports.com
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Bruce Arians is under attack. So are his Cardinals. Same with the every other team in the league. Bruce Arians — along with the NFL — is at war.
Arians’ enemy isn’t one you’d expect. Because, according to Arians, football is under attack from … moms.
“We feel like this is our sport. It’s being attacked, and we got to stop it at the grass roots,” Arians said on Friday, according to NBC Sports Radio’s AM 1060 Phoenix. “It’s the best game that’s ever been f—— invented, and we got to make sure that moms get the message; because that’s who’s afraid of our game right now. It’s not dads, it’s moms.”
Arians, speaking to more than 130 high school football coaches at the “Arizona Cardinals High School Football Coaches Clinic,” emphasized rugby style tackling — a form of tackling that doesn’t involve using helmets to strike ballcarriers — as a way to make the game safer.
“Our job is to make sure the game is safe, at all levels,” Arians said. “The head really has no business being in the game. There’s a lot of different teachers, but when I was taught how to tackle, and block, it was on a two-man sled, and you did it with your shoulder pads. That’s still the best way to do it. There’s really isn’t any place for your face in the game. I would beg all of you to continue to learn more about what they’re now calling rugby style tackling. I thought it was f—— football myself.”
So, let’s back up a second and talk about Arians’ alleged enemy in this fight. This isn’t his first time blaming parents for the so-called attacks on football. This is, however, his first time specifically singling out moms, not dads.
At the end of March, Arians told the Monday Morning Quarterback, “People that say, ‘I won’t let my son play [football]’ are fools,” adding that “We have this fear of concussion that is real, but not all of those statistics, I think, can prove anything.”
Then, the NFL came under siege due to the New York Times, which released a lengthy story that detailed how the NFL used incomplete data when researching concussions and how the NFL had ties to Big Tobacco. The NFL has since refuted the Times’ story and demanded a retraction — a demand the Times refused.
The NFL is also confronted with increased cases of early retirements. A year after a young Chris Borland walked away from the game due to health concerns, more players are following his lead. Husain Abdullah, 30, announced last month that he was retiring after seven seasons, partly due to concussions. And, just days ago, A.J. Tarpley retired at the age of 23 “to preserve [his] future health.”
Somewhere — I’m not sure where exactly — moms apparently fit in, according to Arians. But the more likely enemy of the league appears to be science, which links CTE to football, and the players themselves, some of whom are now beginning to recognize the inherent risks of the game and are weighing those risks before deciding to strap on a helmet.
Update: Bruce Arians has clarified his stance on football and moms.
Just to clear up any misinterpretations, this is my view about football and moms pic.twitter.com/67zGKRyXiK
— Bruce Arians (@BruceArians) April 10, 2016