Team doctors have cleared Browns quarterback Colt McCoy to play in Sunday's game against the Cardinals, saying that he is healthy enough to once again suffer concussions. The announcement comes just seven days after Pittsburgh's James Harrison concussed him with a helmet-to-helmet hit, leaving him dazed on the Heinz Field turf.
The quarterback passed a series of tests on Thursday morning that place him within the limits of the new player safety rules, which the League has been strictly enforcing to safeguard players from suffering traumatic brain injuries until they're ready.
"He is lucid, hardly drooling, and he can identify several shapes on a chart," said Browns president Mike Holmgren during a press conference. "The swelling in his brain has gone down enough to where he could absorb at least three direct-to-skull high-velocity impacts in a single game without risk of coma or temporary retardation."
The decision to subject McCoy to concussions so soon will certainly generate controversy. The team is already under fire for sending him back into the game after he was injured, bypassing the rule that requires sideline medical staff to shine a small flashlight in a player's eyes before declaring, "He's all good!" Yet despite any objections, McCoy is ready to play.
"I don't feel my heartbeat in my forehead anymore, so that's good," said McCoy, who was wearing large sunglasses to protect himself from light of all kinds. "Hopefully once I take a couple of blows I'll be able to forget about all of this and really give it my all."
With one concussion under his belt already, McCoy needs just two more for the Players Association to reward him with a free CAT scan. This is one of the many new benefits available to ensure that players are taken care of and the game remains exciting.