As the NFL and numerous teams, leagues and groups continue to address the apparent rise in concussions and the after-effects they can have, ESPN’s Outside the Lines will delve deep into the subject this week. Beginning with yesterday morning’s SportsCenter, the Emmy-winning OTL kicked off a five-part series titled, “The Concussion Crisis.”
The series will run Sunday through Thursday on SportsCenter and Monday through Friday on OTL. Primarily comprised of previously reported enterprise work as well as fresh elements, the series is being produced in reaction to the growing buzz around the concussion issue in the NFL.
A high profile lawsuit and last week’s suicide of former NFL star Junior Seau has spurred more discussion, investigation and speculation about the issue. (Note: At this posting, there has not been a conclusive determination about whether Seau’s death is concussion related).
“The concussions issue has certainly been dominating the football conversation recently,” said OTL’s senior coordinating producer Dwayne Bray.
“With the lawsuits against the NFL and some recent suicides by former players, people have a lot of unanswered questions. With this five-part series, we’ve included new interviews and analysis along with some material we’ve aired previously. It’s our hope that this reporting helps ESPN’s audience understand this story a bit better.”
The in-depth look and conversations are an attempt to bring much of ESPN’s previous reporting to the table and further shine a light on this important issue. Steve Bunin will host OTL on Monday and Tuesday with Bob Ley finishing the week in the host’s chair.
Below is the tentative schedule of shows*:
Day 1: “Tale of Two Teammates” (Dave Duerson and Jim McMahon)
Steve Delsohn, Reporter
Day 2: “NFL Lawsuits” (Jamaal Lewis and Dorsey Levens)
Bob Holtzman, Reporter
Day 3: “Future of Football” (Tom McHale, Eddie Mason and LaVar Arrington)
Tom Farrey, Reporter
Day 4: “Players’ Stories” (Andre Watters, Mike Webster, Daryl Johnston and Fred McNeil)
Jeremy Schaap, Reporter
Day 5: “What’s Ahead” Essay
Chris Connelly, Reporter
*Schedule subject to change.