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Playoff teams will have sideline TV monitors for injuries

Nov. 6, 2013
 
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The NFL will continue to allow the medical staffs of all playoff teams access to sideline TV replay monitors to help diagnose injuries during games this weekend. The league started the experiment last week in the wild-card round, and the New York Giants' medical staff used the monitor twice to diagnose head injuries to running back D.J. Ware and cornerback Aaron Ross. "They all had them (last weekend) and the feedback we received is that all the team medical staffs last weekend welcomed the video access and thought it was a good idea," said NFL spokesman Greg Aiello. Only members of the medical staffs are allowed access to the monitors and only for injuries -- coaches and players can't use them to watch plays. The replays allow doctors and trainers to see how a player was injured and can be especially helpful in showing whether a player received a blow to the head and possible concussion. Earlier this season, Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy took a hit to the head, but none of the team's medical staff was watching the play because all were attending to other players. McCoy came to the sideline complaining of a sore hand but said nothing about the blow to the head, and he was allowed to return to the game for a few plays even though it later was revealed he'd sustained a severe concussion. With the replay monitors, the Browns' doctors could have seen that McCoy took a helmet-to-helmet blow and tested for the concussion immediately. If the experiment goes well in the playoffs, the league might deploy the monitors for all games next season.

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