|Guessing Siri isn't the NFL's answer. (CBSSports.com)|
Goodell, speaking with Sports Illustrated's Peter King in a lengthy interview, said "it's possible" that beginning in 2012, the NFL will have a concussion-monitoring test available on tablets.
"The first thing to do is prevent [concussions]," Goodell said. "That goes to rules, equipment. The second is our sideline assessment tools. We have made changes to that. There are some new technologies that make this very soon in the future where on a tablet, you can actually take a test on the sideline to determine [the concussion]."
Of course, having a tablet test for concussions isn't as simple as having "an app for that" (much less having John Malkovich present at every single NFL game every week).
And it seems like a stretch to think that such a test will be available as soon as September this year, especially given that you can't simply create a uniform test for every single player. Besides, there are other things that the NFL needs to put into place first, which Goodell also addressed.
"The player has to self-report and has to tell professionals," Goodell said. "We have spotters, as you know, our ATC [athletic trainers] spotters program, which we implemented late in the season to sort of identify hits that would require an evaluation. That will be expanded and fully in place this season."
Making those spotter-trainer types full-time is a tremendous step and should go a long way towards preventing something like the Colt McCoy incident that occurred with the Browns last year (McCoy was re-inserted to the game after what was a blatantly obvious concussion). Goodell believes the McCoy situation would've played out differently under 2012's setup.
The most difficult part for the NFL, though, won't be creating the technology to test a concussion. It will be getting players to admit that they've suffered some sort of knock to the noggin on the field. Players are competitive and don't like to leave games, and admitting a concussion puts them at risk for future playing time and financial gain.
If the NFL can convince players to step forward and admit they've suffered concussions, that'll trump any technological advancement available.
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