NFL concussion settlement is making changes for player's safety - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

NFL concussion settlement is making changes for player's safety

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EAST TEXAS (KLTV) -

Recent settlements with the NFL are leading to more rules and efforts to prevent concussions.

The movement is highlighting the importance of keeping players safe during their games.

Now, coaches are making adjustments to ensure the safety of their players.

"Concussions are playing big role now for the football kids," said Joe Thompson, President of the Tyler Lion Football Association. "It's a problem from pros in the NFL, to college, all the way to high school and now to the little league level because these kids bring the wood."

Officials say as neglegant as player safety may have been in the past, it most certainly is changing.

"We use to tell kids, 'shake it off' but now it's a pretty serious lick. We look at that and try to do the same thing the NFL is doing to make it safer for these kids because we look at grown people who have had concussions in the past. I look at that and these guys are ruined for life," said Thompson.

Now coaches say they are teaching kids safer ways to tackle.

"We put our heads in a certain way so our head doesn't get hit a certain way and if it does we can hurt our neck and get a concussion," said Gunner Clark, a Tyler Lion football player.

They also have new helmets that make players like Gunner feel safer.

"It is better. It has more protection so when we get hit hard it doesn't hurt that bad," said Gunner.

Player safety is something that is being reviewed by the coaches and referees.

"We have an official meeting where the referees come to the table and they share a lot of things with us at the meeting. We have to go over that to look over these children and their safety," said Thompson.

Coach Thompson says safety must start with the coaches.

"When you sit and look at the whole picture, we got to change the way we coach too because it's not about winning. It's about the safety of these kids," said Thompson.

The Lion Football Association says they will continue to participate in safety clinics to stay informed about player safety for their kids.

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