Though Chuck Bednarik’s hit on Frank Gifford was thought to be the standard by which to measure hard hits in the pre-Super Bowl era NFL, it’s arguable that today it wouldn’t make most highlight reels. In the modern NFL where the equipment is constantly improving, so is the game constantly becoming more and more violent.
To put it plainly, the “safer” the padding and helmets become in football, the more dangerous the game becomes. Tom Brady Sr. questions whether he would let Tom Brady Jr. play today, and there’s some validity to his uncertainty owing to the paradoxical truth that the more the players are protected the more likely they are to be seriously hurt.
If this is doubted, one need only ask why, despite herculean efforts to improve the protective nature of helmets, that concussions remain the norm. The answer here is seemingly obvious to those who’ve followed Tullock. The sturdier the helmet, the bigger the risks taken by the player.