Detroit Lions tight end Dorin Dickerson did his team no favors late in a loss to the New York Giants on Sunday, dropping a pass and committing a costly holding penalty in overtime. However, Dickerson had a valid reason for his flubs — the league office just isn’t going to enjoy hearing it.
After the game, Dickerson told reporters that he had suffered a concussion during a fourth quarter kick return and was knocked unconscious.
“I just got knocked out,” Dickerson said, via Dave Birkett of The Detroit Free Press. “I just got a little concussion. I should have reported it. I thought I could get through it.”
Birkett noted that a Lions spokesperson cut Dickerson’s interview off and said he reported the injury after the holding penalty. Teams are not supposed to let players return to the field under any circumstances if they are experiencing concussion-like symptoms, but we know there have been plenty of players who successfully mask the symptoms to remain in the game.
“Honestly, after we leave here I probably won’t remember talking to you,” Dickerson said. “I’m not trying to make excuses, I still shouldn’t have did what I did. I thought I had a pretty good game up until that point, up until what happened. It sucks.”
Trainers are supposed to do their best to watch for head injuries. That said, Dickerson’s injury supposedly happened during a kick return. He was not the ball carrier, so it’s almost impossible for trainers to see everything that happens to all 11 players who are on the kick return team. Will Dickerson’s excuse make Roger Goodell cringe? Certainly, but I highly doubt it will surprise him.