Cushing's perspective on season-ending hits

August, 21, 2013
8/21/13
4:45
PM ET
Brian Cushing understands how difficult it is to be on the receiving end of a hit that causes a season-ending injury.

As a defensive player, he also has the opposite perspective.

I asked Cushing today if he's ever delivered a hit that caused a season-ending injury to another player and he said he didn't think he did. But what followed was a thoughtful dissection of the issue that bubbled up again after Texans rookie D.J. Swearinger delivered a legal, but season-ending hit to Dolphins tight end Dustin Keller.

"It’s the nature of the game that we play in," Cushing said. "It’s a very physical sport."

Cushing noted that players in the league are getting "bigger, faster, stronger," which might increase the chance of serious injuries even when a hit is completely legal.

Cushing, who suffered a torn ACL in October, was asked if he thinks the league's emphasis on not hitting high will lead to more lower body injuries.

"Probably," he said. "Probably. And it’s unfortunate. I wish you could find a happy medium between the knee and the head. Guys are so fearful of the fine. The magnitude of number of guys who are getting fined, it’s ridiculous. Obviously guys are staying away from the area, in return guys are being lost for the year. It’s a lose-lose situation. Something needs to be done about that. What? I don’t know."

Tania Ganguli

ESPN Houston Texans reporter

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