By Michael Hull
New Orleans Saints Staff
As players around the NFL return to training camp to prepare for the upcoming season, there is one major change they will have to adjust to.
Guardian Caps are protective, soft shells with an outer layer of padding that fit on top of helmets in order to help prevent concussions. The caps have to be worn by all offensive linemen, defensive linemen, linebackers and tight ends throughout camp.
The league said in a statement that the caps reduce the force from head contact by 10 percent if one player wears it and 20 percent if both players involved in the collision wear it.
As the league tries to minimize the amount of head injuries players sustain, players and coaches around the country are getting used to the new normal.
Some players, such as Arizona Cardinals defensive end J.J. Watt, have been critical of the Guardian Caps and how they feel when practicing. New Orleans Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan said he feels like a two-year old running around due to the forward lean caused by the extra weight of the caps.
“There’s a noticeable change that they’re going to say is not noticeable,” Jordan said. “I’ve got a lot of moves that involve shaking and shimmying with the head, so I’m going to look like a big ole bobblehead.”