NFL issuses directive on concussion symptoms



The NFL has told its game officials to watch closely for concussion symptoms in players.

Ten days after San Diego guard Kris Dielman sustained a head injury against the Jets and later suffered a seizure on the team’s flight home from New York, the league’s injury and safety panel issued the directive Wednesday.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello says, “Our game officials will receive concussion awareness training and will remain alert to possible concussions during games.”

If an official believes a player might have suffered a concussion, he should take appropriate steps to alert the team and get medical attention for the player.

49ERS: Carlos Rogers is loving every minute of his new adventure out West. So much so that the cornerback has already made it clear he wants to stay put on a long-term deal rather than test free agency after the season.

“I wouldn’t want to be any other place,” the former Butler High and Washington Redskins star said.

GIANTS: New York started preparations for Sunday’s game against New England without five starters.

Leading running back Ahmad Bradshaw (foot), starting wide receivers Hakeem Nicks (hamstring) and Mario Manningham (illness), center David Baas (knee) and defensive end Osi Umenyiora (shoulder) all missed Wed­nesday’s practice.

RAMS: Quarterback Sam Bradford (left ankle sprain) is hopeful of playing this weekend despite being limited to watching Wednesday’s practice.

CARDINALS: Quarterback Kevin Kolb sat out practice with a turf toe injury.

RAIDERS: Receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh is back in the NFL, hoping a reunion with his old quarterback and his former position coach will help lead Oakland to the playoffs.

AUTOPSY: Bubba Smith, the former NFL player-turned-actor and TV pitchman, died of acute drug intoxication and other conditions, the Los Angeles County coroner’s office said.

A caretaker at the 66-year-old Smith’s home found his body on Aug. 3.

Autopsy results showed the 6-foot-7 Smith had high levels of the weight-loss drug phentermine in his system, coroner’s spokesman Ed Winter said in a news release. He also had heart disease, an enlarged heart and up to 75 percent blockage of some blood vessels.