The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday night, but the game was overshadowed by the brutal nature of a number of hits and injuries from the two AFC North rivals.
While seeing something like Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier lying motionless on the turf for an extended period of time may have sparked sympathy and questions about football from some, retired sports broadcaster Brent Musburger took a different route entirely and praised the violence of the NFL while critiquing "snowflakes":
Injury concerns have been a defining characteristic of the 2017 season, as marquee superstars such as Aaron Rodgers, J.J. Watt, Odell Beckham Jr., Richard Sherman and Deshaun Watson, among many more, have missed significant time.
Despite Musburger's dismissive tone, the violence of the sport that has featured concussion lawsuits and settlements in recent years was brought to the forefront once again Monday.
Shazier was carted off the field in front of distraught teammates, and the Steelers announced he was taken to the hospital. The Bengals also announced running back Joe Mixon suffered a concussion after he fell limp to the turf following a jarring hit.
What's more, Cincinnati linebacker Vontaze Burfict never returned after Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster leveled him with a vicious blindside block and then drew a flag for standing over him and taunting. Cincinnati safety George Iloka drilled Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown with a helmet-to-helmet hit on a touchdown reception.
NFL vice president of football communications Michael Signora shared a statement from the league Tuesday noting both Iloka and Smith-Schuster were suspended for a game.
That a 78-year-old would glorify the past of a professional sports league isn't particularly surprising, but Musburger is a titan in the field of sports broadcasting. The words of the National Sports Media Association Hall of Famer carry weight, especially after he called so many football games as a professional.
Alas, his Tuesday tweet suggests he didn't see anything concerning about the physicality of Monday's contest.