The Executive Director of NFL Players’ Association Lloyd Howell has instructed all 30 NFL stadiums to utilise natural grass instead of artificial turf. The instructions have come after New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers suffered an Achilles tear on Monday, September 11. With the new changes, the NFL aims to reduce the number of unnecessary injuries that happen on synthetic turfs.
Speaking of Rodgers’ injury, during the Jets’ game against the Buffalo Bills on Monday, Rodgers suffered a torn Achilles on New York’s fourth offensive play. With the injury, the 39-year-old was ruled out of the game and the remainder of the session. It’s been a long since players and the teams have time and again expressed their preference for natural grass.
In an official statement, Howell said, “Moving all stadium fields to high quality natural grass surfaces is the easiest decision the NFL can make. The players overwhelmingly prefer it and the data is clear that grass is simply safer than artificial turf. It is an issue that has been near the top of the players list during my team visits and one I have raised with the NFL.”
The statement further read, “While we know there is an investment to making this change, there is a bigger cost to everyone in our business if we keep losing our best players to unnecessary injuries. It makes no sense that stadiums can flip over to superior grass surface when the World Cup comes, or soccer clubs come to visit for exhibition games in the summer, but inferior artificial surfaces are acceptable for our own players. This is worth the investment, and it simply needs to change now.”