USA Football proposes new safety rules to reduce youth concussions

DOBBS FERRY, New York (WABC) -- The governing body of amateur football is proposing dramatic new safety rules to cut down on injuries, especially concussions.

Barbara Dann has two sons who play football. Her boys love the sport, though both have had concussions.

Over 100 kids participate in the Dobbs Ferry Youth Football program.

Safety, coaches say, is a priority with all league officials trained in the "Heads Up" program, designed to minimize contact with the helmet.

While participation levels are steady in Dobbs Ferry, nationally the numbers are down 20%. USA Football, the governing body is proposing changes.

Teams would play on a smaller field, games would be seven-on-seven rather than 11 players per side, and special teams would be eliminated with no kickoffs or punts.

In Westchester, kickoffs have been already been eliminated.

But area coaches worry about changing the game too radically.

Some parents say the risk remains too great, while others welcome any additional safety measures.
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