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Who knew that football would be relegated to the research of science? To me, football is a sport. The owners will call it a business. Advertisers call it a bonanza of marketing opportunity. Get real! Football is the icon of American sport. The rest of the world should be required to rename their their brand of futbol as kick ball.
This physical game I remember growing up, has matured such that organizations are turning to science to develop their game further. Popular Mechanics has reached beyond their little gadgets to paint a picture of the brute force that a vicious tackle given by our own Trufant will have on a lame lith wide receiver on the Philadelphia Eagles.
On the play shown in the photo above, Seattle Seahawks defensive back Marcus Trufant (23) drilled Philadelphia Eagles receiver Greg Lewis (83) with such force that Lewis couldn't hang on to the ball. (Seattle won the Dec. 5, 2005, game at Philadelphia 42-0 in the most lopsided shutout ever broadcast on Monday Night Football. So what is the anatomy of a tackle?
Mass, inertia, un-movable objects, you tend to forget from science class. No one forgets how to fry an ant with a simple piece of glass. Yet, who would know that a cornerback the size of Trufant could exert 1600 pounds of force upon a wide receiver? Yes 1600 pounds!
According to researchers, the human body can withstand double that, if the impact can be distributed well. That is where the player's pads and equipment enter the formula. The shape and the content of the "memory" foam padding are designed to maximize absorption of said energy. Visco elastic foam was developed by NASA to protect astronauts to withstand the G-forces of liftoff. This foam retains its shape considerable better than conventional foam after an impact.
According to a study at Darryl Tapp's former school Virgina Tech (a little NCAA humor), a player speared by a tackle, could receive up to a 150-G force hit to the head. Reviewing the graphic in the Popular Mechanics article, a hard tackle could inflict the impact 10-15 times that of G-force of an F-16. Remember that when Chad Johnson visits Seattle. Bryan Russell will be nicknamed F-16.
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