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KC Chiefs: Should NFL teams be held accountable for poor field conditions?


The Kansas City Chiefs left Arizona with a 1-0 record after completely dismantling the Cardinals 44-21. While the win was great, it didn't come without consequences as the Chiefs sustained a handful of injuries.

While none of the team's injuries were anything major, they are the type to knock out some key players for a few games. Particularly those to kicker Harrison Butker and rookie cornerback Trent McDuffie.

There's something that is extra bothersome about their injuries, though, besides the fact it means that the Chiefs will be without them for this important stretch of the season. Head coach Andy Reid said in his most recent press conference that the turf conditions in Arizona's stadium played a part in the severity of the team's injuries.

"It was part of the Butker injury and McDuffie injury," Reid said. "The turf picked up and I would tell you that that did have something to do with it. If it didn't, I would tell you that, too. So, it's not an excuse by any means, but I mean, you all can see it. Watch the tape."

McDuffie strained his hamstring bad enough for the Chiefs to place him on injured reserve meaning he'll miss at least the next four games. As for Butker, he sprained his ankle on a kickoff and will miss tomorrow night's game against the Los Angeles Chargers. Both of which were blamed on the field conditions and loose turf from the field being resodded.

Should the NFL hold teams accountable for poor field conditions leading to injury?

This isn't the first time this year that the Chiefs have encountered less than ideal field conditions. Andy Reid was even forced to comment about the field conditions inside of Chicago's Soldier Field during the preseason when photos emerged on social media showing a patchy surface. Luckily no major injuries.

Given the two most recent incidents, it is fair to wonder if the league should enforce stricter field standards leading up to a game. Even further, the NFL might have to consider holding teams and their leadership accountable when players get hurt on their surface.

We've seen many other incidents where players have been hurt and the field conditions have been in question. That said, it is difficult to say just how much of a factor field conditions are in each injury. Every case is different.

We're lucky that none of the Chiefs injuries were season-ending or career-altering, but what if they were? And what if the loose turf was the root cause? You'd have to imagine even more outrage would be directed towards the Arizona Cardinals. Regardless, there should be increased measures to make sure this isn't a recurring issue across the league.

The NFL should have it's own team that is dedicated towards inspecting the field before a game and gauging the feelings of players and coaches before a game is played on any surface. If it is determined that the field conditions are unacceptable teams may need to be fined or even forced to forfeit a game. Either that or the game would need to be rescheduled or moved but that would be tough to do and could end up providing undeserved opportunities and advantages for teams to get extra rest and whatnot. It would be easier and more ethical to simply punish teams for a lack of competence.

It is ridiculous that in the year 2022 with the technology and manpower along with the capabilities individual franchises hold that grass and turf fields can be so underprepared before some of the world's most famous athletes run around on them. There's just too much invested into the NFL product for fields to be so embarrassing.

Should the NFL hold teams accountable for poor field conditions?

  • Yes

  • No


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