As the National Football League lockout drones on, injured players need to use their workers’ compensation benefits. Like other Maryland workers who are injured on the job, they are entitled to compensation for their work-related injuries.
In the context of the ongoing NFL lockout, the fate of injured players has been a cause for major concern for the NFL Players Association. Injuries are a common fact of life for professional football players. Under ordinary circumstances, NFL players are able to rehabilitate their injuries at team facilities. However, the lockout has forced injured players to look elsewhere in order to get the medical care they need to recover from their injuries.
NFL players can’t talk with team trainers or use team facilities until a new collective bargaining agreement is reached and the lockout ends.
Players are now in the same position that many other injured workers find themselves in when recovering from workplace injuries. They need to find a medical facility that will accept their workers’ compensation insurance money.
This has brought many NFL players playing on teams across the country back home to Maryland. Several players are rehabbing from their injuries at the University of Maryland’s football training facility under the direction of rehab specialist Kala Flagg.
Joey Haynos is one of the players who have come back to Maryland. Haynos played at Maryland before joining the Miami Dolphins. While competing for the starting tight-end job, Haynos broke his foot in a preseason game last August. Once he was able to begin rehabbing his foot, he needed to find a medical facility that would take his workers’ comp money. When he found out that Flagg would be able to take his workers’ compensation money, he characterized his decision to rehabilitate his foot in Maryland a “no-brainer.”
Source: The Washington Post, “Injured NFL players must be creative when dealing with injuries during the lockout,” Mark Giannotto, 6/28/2011