Bernard Pollard #31 of the Baltimore Ravens answers questions from the media during Super Bowl XLVII Media Day ahead of Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 29, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The San Francisco 49ers will take on the Baltimore Ravens on February 3, 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS (USA TODAY) - Bernard Pollard is known for hard hits (just ask the
New England Patriots), and he leveled one at the NFL this week when he
predicted the league wouldn't be around in 30 years, because the
crackdown on ferocious hits will turn off fans.
On Tuesday, at Super Bowl XLVII Media Day, the Baltimore Ravens safety didn't back down.
"There's car crash every play," he said. "Those helmets are popping, those pads are hitting. This is a grown man's game.
stand by what I said. I'm entitled to my own opinion. I play this game.
I understand his game. For me, growing up, to see where the game has
gone from then to now, it's a very special game, but it's changing."
And not for the better, Pollard says. While he believes the game is on its way out, he has a solution: Don't change it.
talking about taking kickoffs away and playing only offense and
defense," he said. "Guys will lose their jobs - punters and kickers and
long snappers. We can't change something that's been built.
then you say this game is getting more dangerous, let's reduce the hits.
But guys are getting bigger, faster, stronger. You can put a bigger
helmet on me, but it's still going top create the same contact. Things
are still going to happen.
"What do you do? You keep playing
football. You're going to have your concussions and broken bones. As
players, we know what we signed up for," Pollard said.
believes the lawsuits against the league can be blamed on "a breakdown
in the medical system. They're just trying to get some things handled
that weren't handled properly," he said.
And what about his children?
have a son, and my stance right now is I don't want him playing
football," Pollard said. "We want our kids to have better than we did.
If he is gung-ho, I'll probably let him play, but I don't want him to.
going to be 5 soon and he wants to throw the ball and be tackled and I
see that in him. But as a parent, we want better for our kids."