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The “Groundbreaking” Admission

2016 March 15

At a roundtable yesterday on Capitol Hill, the NFL’s top brass on player safety, Jeff Miller, acknowledged that “certainly…there’s a link” between football and CTE. But the admission did not come without equivocation.

Rather, it followed the industry’s playbook of perpetuating doubt: “But there are also a number of questions that come with that,” Miller went on to say.

Ergo you can expect that despite this admission, the NFL will continue to cast doubt upon the unequivocal link between repetitive brain trauma and CTE. Worse still, the NFL will continue to employ and associate itself with adamant CTE deniers–such as Dr. Pellman–and the NFL will also continue to pedal false hope to parents that playing youth tackle football is “safe.”

Indeed, shortly after the hearing concluded, the NFL went on the offensive and sought to reconcile Miller’s admission with the NFL’s playbook of doubt:

He was discussing Dr. Mckee’s findings and made the additional point that a lot more questions need to be answered,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement.  “He said that the experts should speak to the state of the science…[and he] made the additional point that a lot more questions need to be answered.

Far from being a watershed moment, this “admission” will likely be another chapter in the NFL’s obfuscation of the truth. History can be an important lesson.


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