Oct 14, 2019
PSA compares dangers of youth tackle football to smoking cigarettes

The Concussion Legacy Foundation last week unveiled its “Tackle Can Wait” PSA, comparing the dangers of youth tackle football to smoking cigarettes.

The Boston-based organization hopes to change how we handle and understand concussions in sports. One of its goals is to have kids under the age of 14 play flag football instead of a contact game.

In the 30-second video below, kids are smoking cigarettes as the narrator says, “Tackle football is a lot like smoking. The younger I start, the more I’m exposed to danger.”

The video received pushback on social media, with some commenters asking why sports like soccer aren’t singled out. Others took issue with the comparison to nicotine.

“More scare tactics from a Big Brother do-gooder group,” one commenter said. “Smoking is legal and a matter of choice. No one doubts it’s risky, but it’s nobody’s business but the smoker.

  » ALSO SEE: A comprehensive approach to concussions

“Football, like everything else, can be dangerous. Parents know this and they are fully capable of deciding if their child can participate. They don’t need lectures from outside organizations with an agenda.

“But, there is no connection between the two and PSA’s that try to link them are dishonest and deceptive.”

Football sees more concussions than other sports, but it’s also the nation’s most played sport at the high school level. Organizations like USA Football have launched new initiatives that teach safe tackling, and it also created the Football Development Model to encourage youth leagues to build players toward the tackle game by teaching proper skills and techniques.

Learn more about the Concussion Legacy Foundation.

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