Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin addresses the mothers in the audience during Tuesday night's Football Safety Clinic held at the team's Tempe facility.
Forty-two moms with sons at various stages of their football journeys received a crash course in player safety from the Cardinals on Tuesday night.
The three-hour presentation at the team's practice facility increased awareness on a number of different topics, including concussion protocol, proper tackling, the dangers of overuse and proper hydration.
The Cardinals presented the 'Football Safety Clinic' in conjunction with USA Football and its 'Heads Up Football' program, which is designed to further the game's development, inspire participation and ensure a safer experience for players at the youth and high school levels.
"We're trying to show the parents how the NFL, and the Arizona Cardinals, in particular, are trying
to make this a safer game," said Mo Streety, the Cardinals' youth football coordinator. "We're trying to teach them better terminology and let them see the different aspects of what their kids are going through."
Offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin and defensive coordinator Todd Bowles were joined by several current and former Cardinals during a question-and-answer session to begin the event, followed by Dr. Javier Cardenas explaining the dangers of concussions.
Cardenas said the majority of concussions don't end up being serious, but the problem specifically arises when the brain injuries compound.If you have a second injury before you've recovered from the first, there can be devastating consequences," he told the audience.
Assistant athletic trainer Chad Cook then went over the importance of hydration, noting it is especially important in a place as hot as Arizona. He was followed by assistant offensive line coach Larry Zierlein and cornerbacks coach Kevin Ross, who spoke of the improvements in player safety.
"Back when I played, we weren't allowed to have water," Zierlein said. "I don't know how we're still alive. There have been a lot of advancements."
The group of moms then went inside the team's indoor practice bubble, put on helmets and shoulder pads and ran through a variety of drills. The event was light-hearted, but it also helped show the mothers what their children go through when playing football.
"We've taken great steps," Streety said. "It's been a gigantic leap forward in the technical aspect, and even moreso in the academic aspect, as far as the knowledge, the purpose and the scope of what this (sport) is about."