A major change to the NFL's concussion protocol will go into affect beginning during this weekend's wild-card round action. In a memo obtained Friday, the league announced it has arranged to install video monitors on each team's sideline in an effort to provide further information to team medical staffs for use in treating in-game injuries.
As the memo details, these monitors allow teams to review video from the network broadcast of any play in which an injury occurred.
"The medical staffs have advised us that having this tool available will assist them in assessing and treating injuries experienced during a game," according to the memo. "Our operations staff will review the use of this equipment with team medical staffs prior to this weekend's games."
The league made it clear that the use of this equipment is for medical purposes only and not to gain any competitive advantage. The NFL plans to monitor the use of the video monitors and will determine if its availability will be expanded next season.
The league issued the following guidelines surrounding the equipment's use:
» The equipment may only be used by a team physician or the head athletic trainer. Under no circumstances may coaches, players, or others have access to this equipment.
» The medical staff may only review video of a play to assist it in treating a player who suffered (or may have suffered), an injury during that play.
» The head team physician or the head athletic trainer must notify the league officiating observer in the press box prior to accessing the field video monitor.