League tells game officials to monitor players for concussions

NEW YORK -- The NFL has told its game officials to watch closely for concussion symptoms in players.

Ten days after San Diego Chargers guard Kris Dielman sustained a head injury against the Jets and later suffered a seizure on the team's flight home from New York, the league's injury and safety panel issued the directive Wednesday.

"Our game officials will receive concussion awareness training and will remain alert to possible concussions during games," league spokesman Greg Aiello said. "If an official believes a player may have suffered a concussion, he should take appropriate steps to alert the team and get medical attention for the player."

Dielman was concussed with approximately 12 minutes remaining in the Oct. 23 game, after which he struggled to maintain balance. He finished the game despite the head injury and wasn't assessed until after the loss to New York.

The Chargers didn't mention any injuries following the game and only announced Dielman's injury shortly before the team boarded a plane for San Diego.

Dielman suffered a grand mal seizure near the end of the charter flight, although he was cleared of all long-term complications surrounding the concussion and seizure.

The Chargers came under scrutiny for how they handled Dielman's injury, but coach Norv Turner said at the time that he believed the team dealt with the situation as best it could.

"Everything was handled extremely well," Turner said. "All the proper precautions were taken. Kris was evaluated when we landed, and all the tests were excellent. We're fortunate, he's fortunate and we're moving on."

Dielman never came out of the game despite intermittent signs of struggle, although he performed well as a blocker. The Chargers said they never saw a reason to evaluate their Pro Bowl left guard.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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