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Larry Fitzgerald Asks Defenders to Hit Him High and Offers to Pay Their Fines
The NFL has been working pretty hard to prevent brain injuries over the last several years. They still won’t admit that CTE is a problem for former NFL players, but the league does have a strict concussion protocol and dishes big fines for hits targeting the head.
The player response to the enhanced scrutiny of head injuries has been mixed. Some are convinced there’s a big problem and have chosen to retire early rather than turn their brains to mush. Others don’t seem that concerned.
You can put Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald in the latter category.
In an interview with Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press published on Wednesday, Detroit Lions safety Glover Quin make the pretty incredible revelation that Fitzgerald asks defenders to hit him high, not low, and that he offers to pay any fines they might incur as a result. Apparently Fitzgerald would rather be moody and forgetful later than slow now.
“He’s big on don’t hit him low, hit him high,” Quin recounted. “He’ll tell you on the field, like, ‘Hey, bro, I’ll pay your fine for you. Like, don’t hit me in the legs. He’ll rather you hit him up high. Don’t take his legs, because obviously you need your legs to run.”
Quin says he is not the only one Fitzgerald says this to. He also clarifies that Fitzgerald is not talking about run of the mill tackles, but big wide-open tackles where defenders can actually make a choice.
“He’ll say it all the time,” Quin says. “You can ask anybody. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only DB. You ask anybody he’ll tell you like, ‘Hey man, don’t take my knees out like that.’ I’m not saying like you’re trying to make a tackle, but he’s saying if you got that shot where he’s coming across.
“You have these guys that had their knee in the ground and get caught when they get hit and tear their knees up. He’s like, ‘I would rather you hit me up here than hit me down here.’ Now, as a DB, you’re going to take the lower hit because this hit right here is going to give you a fine. But he’ll tell you like, ‘Hey, I’ll pay your fine for you.’”
Fitzgerald has yet to respond to this story. You can be sure the NFL is very eager to hear his side of things.
Hat Tip – [Detroit Free Press]