How the NFL stacks up against other sports in the injury stakes

From a tweaked hamstring to broken bones or ruptured tendons, injuries are an occupational hazard in professional sport.

Some sports are perceived to be more dangerous than others, particularly those where there is a high level of contact between the participants.

A recent study by Betway Insider sought to unravel the mystery about which sport generated the most injuries over a sustained period.

They compared data from the NHL, NBA, NFL, MLB and the English Premier League over a five-year period to establish which sports incur the most injuries.

The results were not good for American Football. The study found that the NFL is the only competition to have increased injury numbers year-on-year since 2017 (by 73 percent).

More than 7,600 injuries were recorded between 2017 and 2021, around 200 more than occurred in Major League Baseball.

However, when you consider that MLB has a significantly longer season than the NFL, the findings are extremely concerning.

Third place for the most injury prone sport went to basketball, with just under 7,000 injuries recorded in the NBA during the study period.

Arguably the most surprising outcome from the research was the NHL placing fourth on the list, with around 5,300 injuries over the five years.

Given the brutal nature of the NHL, with on-ice fights still a regular feature in the sport, the findings are a head-scratcher to say the least.

The English Premier League reported the least number injuries with just over 2,600, suggesting budding sports stars may be best served by taking up soccer in the future.

Injuries are a major headache for the NFL at the moment, especially with regards to the controversy surrounding the long-term effects of brain trauma suffered by players.

A recent incident involving Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in a game against the Cincinnati Bengals brought the debate back into focus.

The NFL has long been accused of burying its head in the sand where concussions are concerned, although a series of lawsuits spiked their attention.

New testing protocols have been introduced to determine whether players have suffered a concussion, and these must be adhered to before they can return to action.

Revised guidelines required padded helmets to be worn during training camp for some players, which led to a decrease in the number of reported concussions.

However, given how the NFL stacks up against other major sports, it still has plenty of work to do to reduce the risk of players suffering injuries.

One of the biggest challenges the NFL faces is that medical staff are reliant on players to report symptoms, and many still cover things up.

Sports stars have historically been conditioned not to show weakness, and admitting you are not fit enough to play falls into this category.

Despite this, the study findings show that the NFL must find ways to reduce the risk of injury to at least bring it into line with other elite level sports.

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