What NFL players and coaches say about the new rules mandating thigh and knee pads be worn on the field:
"It's not going to stop no injuries. It's not. You can put pads on all
you want to. If you get hit in the knee the wrong way you're going to
tear an ACL. You're going to sprain something. You're going to get a
contusion. You're still going to get a contusion with a pad on.
"I don't know what their thinking was behind it. But at the end of the
day, we play the game. You got a lot of guys voting on something that
never played this game before that they think is going to help. But
it's not going to help." — Tennessee safety Bernard Pollard.
"That's usually receivers and corners complaining, but a guy like me,
I'm thighed up, kneed up. I get hit in the thighs all the time. So, I'm
not trying to walk like I'm 80 years old when I'm 30." — Denver running
back Ronnie Hillman.
"It's weird, because I've always worn knee and thigh pads until I got
to the league now. Obviously, I remember my first day of practice. Me
and Tandon (Doss) come out, knee pads and thigh pads in. We jog onto
the field, and Anquan (Boldin) was like, 'What are you all doing?' I
was like 'What do you mean?' He was like, 'Go take your pads off.
Receivers don't wear pads in the league.' We had no clue.
"Now, I feel like I put them back on, they don't even feel right
anymore." — Ravens receiver Torrey Smith.
"It's a mental thing. It's just like a baseball player when he comes to
the plate. He does his little thing and you see him do it every time,
and it's a mind thing with us defensive backs. We feel faster. It
probably doesn't help, but in our minds, we feel faster." — Denver
safety Mike Adams.
"If you start thinking about it, that will distract you from your
focus, what your job is, and the game itself. Once you feel
comfortable, your mind is 100 percent on the task at hand. So, that is
something you learn to get used to. It's not like it is that big of a
problem. You want to be protected because you do get Charley horses,
and I do respect that decision to go forward with that. I think every
practice we have out here and the preseason games will help the skill
players to become comfortable with them." — Denver receiver Eric Decker.
"You got to be able to carry your pads to be a good football player. If
you go out there in shorts or these pads you're not going to wear in
the game, then come game time you're wearing something different than
what you're practicing in. It's not good for you. You want to feel
comfortable. You want to feel like you've been there before, so we'll
do that in practice as well." — Dallas coach Jason Garrett.
"I think when you look statistically at the amount of injuries that
occur in this league due to the lack of knee or thigh pads, it is
minimal. But they have to pay the medical bills, so you can't fault
them for trying to keep us as healthy as they possibly can." — Miami
tackle Tyson Clabo.
"It'll be very little adjustment. That's cosmetic, really. A lot of our
players are comfortable wearing thigh boards. They wore some kind of
thigh board already. It's not an adjustment. They're asked to wear them
in college, and most of our guys are so young that they've worn them
the last two or three years. And they're skill players." — Bengals
coach Marvin Lewis.
What NFL players say about new pads
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