Pete Carroll has 1 request for NFL
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf suffered a knee injury on a non-contact play during Sunday’s win over the Los Angeles Chargers, and Pete Carroll feels it was yet another reminder that artificial field turf is an issue for players.
Metcalf avoided a serious injury, but he will miss some time. Chargers cornerback JC Jackson was not as fortunate. He has been ruled out for the remainder of the season after he suffered a rupture patella tendon in Sunday’s game, also on a non-contact play. SoFi Stadium is one of 14 NFL stadiums that have artificial turf, and Carroll expressed concern over that when speaking with reporters on Tuesday.
“I think we definitely need to look at this really seriously in the offseason again,” Carroll said, via ESPN’s Brady Henderson. “It’s been a discussion before. We’ve got to do what’s right, and we’ve got to do what’s safest for the players and we’ve got to make those choices. I would pound on the drum for that.”
The NFL Players Association has been pushing for years to get the league to switch to natural grass fields in every stadium. They cited injury data two years ago that showed that the rate of non-contact, lower-body injuries was 28 percent higher on artificial turf than natural grass from 2012-2018.
Seahawks safety Quandre Diggs echoed his coach’s concerns, calling natural grass “so much better.”
“I know it’s hard to upkeep grass, but at the end of the day, we’ve got to do what’s best for this billion-dollar industry, and I think the players are a big part of that,” Diggs said. “So maybe we can take some ideas from the players.”
There is one particular stadium that players and coaches seem to believe is more of an issue than others.
Of course, maintaining a natural grass field comes with its own problems. We saw that with the Chicago Bears in the preseason and Week 1. But if the rate of non-contact injuries on artificial turf truly is significantly higher, that is something the NFL needs to address.