Tony Pollard on hip-drop tackle: It would be hard to take it out of the game
In a divisional round playoff game, 49ers defensive back Jimmie Ward caught Tony Pollard from behind and grabbed the Cowboys running back around the waist. Ward meant no harm, but the tackle -- nicknamed a “hip-drop tackle” -- ended with Ward’s body rolling over Pollard’s left leg.
Pollard fractured his fibula and required surgery to repair ligaments in his ankle.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes injured an ankle on a similar tackle in the postseason, with the injuries to Mahomes and Pollard leading to a closer look at the tackle.
The National Rugby League in Australia banned the tackle because of the injuries it causes. Despite talk about a possible move to do the same in the NFL, neither the Competition Committee nor any team offered a proposal regarding the tackle. The league ultimately decided the tackle is hard to define clearly and enforce consistently.
Pollard understands and agrees with that decision.
“It was an unfortunate tackle,” Pollard said, via Jon Machota of TheAtletic.com. “Any tackle where a guy gets hurt, I seen they were trying to take it out. I feel like it will be hard to do that. I see where the league is going. It’s in the right direction. It’s looking out for the players. I like the idea of it, but I feel like it’ll be hard to actually stamp that and take it out.”