There really is a two-edged sword here: On the one hand, football is a violent game and always has been (no less than Teddy Roosevelt, a pretty rugged guy himself, tried to ban it 100 years ago). On the other hand, players have gotten bigger, faster and stronger over the years, so a really big hit can all but maim an opponent (Sidney Rice is probably still hearing birdies tweet after Sunday’s game at Chicago). No easy solution.
That’s what makes rugby all the more remarkable because there’s almost no protective equipment among players beating the crap out of each other for two hours in that sport. Football fans are really missing the boat by not giving rugby a watch.