CFL to immediately end full-contact practices

CFL CFLPA

CFL CFLPA

Here's an interesting bit of football news from north of the border: effective immediately, the Canadian Football League is putting an end to full-contact padded practices during the season.

The league on Wednesday announced it will immediately eliminate full-contact practices during the regular season in an effort to reduce collisions and ensure the well-being of its players.

While we can't really expect the National Football League to follow suit here any time soon, it is a step in the right direction for advocates of player safety on the gridiron.

Previously, teams were allowed full-contact practices during training camp, plus 17 more during the regular season. The league now plays an 18-game schedule over 20 weeks, and even with two bye weeks per team some clubs still end up occasionally playing three games in 11 days.

The move is being made with player safety in mind, with the aim of significantly reducing the number of collisions players absorb over the course of a season.

"Today, we stand shoulder to shoulder on the important issue of player health and safety", CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie said.

The obvious next step is to wonder whether the National Football League would ever make a similar move.

"Early on in those first few weeks I saw one of our teams playing three games in 11 days; having been through a tight schedule like that in the past I just know it's incredibly hard on the players".

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