The NFL has gone to great lengths to improve awareness about concussions this summer, but the league is fighting old-time philosophies and the need for young players to prove themselves in camp. That was very clear in what happened at the Jets' camp on Friday, when rookie linebacker Josh Mauga suffered a concussion on a hit by rookie fullback John Conner on a goal-line play.
According to a transcript of Rex Ryan's Saturday press conference, Mauga continued through the live session.
When asked about players who won't play in Monday's preseason game against the Giants, here's what Ryan said:
"We've got two linebackers [out]. The Terminator [Conner] got one [Friday], Josh Mauga. He gave him a concussion on the goal line. It was a brutal shot. The thing that was amazing was that Josh – because he had never had one or been knocked out before – said he kind of felt funny but he got up and managed to continue to practice. But then it kind of got worse and worse. He did intercept a ball on the last play of the team period. Bart Scott had some great advice for him. He said, 'I think you play better when you have a concussion.'
"I don't know how accurate that is, but yeah, The Terminator got one. The way [Conner] hits, that is going to happen. It's unfortunate for Josh because I was really excited to see him play. In fact, I was talking with the Monday Night crew, going over guys that I was really looking forward to playing and I was bragging about Mauga. Then [the trainers] came and said, 'Oh by the way, he's got a concussion.'"