The Brazilian Cairo Santos assures that if it is not treated in time, it can cause injuries
The Brazilian Cairo Santos, kicker for the NFL’s Chicago Bearswarned Monday that the grass at Soldier Field, home of his team, can cause an injury due to its poor condition.
“I think it’s unwise that we have this grass in the league, there are great players in the teams, it would be a shame if the field becomes a problem and causes an injury to a star and puts him out of the season,” Santos said.
The kicker was referring to the many holes he found last Saturday at Soldier Field where the Bears beat the Kansas City Chiefs 19-14 in the first preseason game for both teams.
The eight-year NFL veteran explained that the field is not a uniform surface, so during the offseason he had to look for similar places to train and get used to it.
“I went to a grass field in a high school which was perfect because of the very long grass, something similar,” confessed Santos, who in 2020 set the record in franchise history for the most effective field goals with the 93.8 percent.
Santos was not the only one who complained about the poor state of the field. The president of the Professional Football Players Association (NFLPA), Joseph Carl Tretter, seconded what the kicker said.
“Clearly we need to reassess what is an acceptable surface for players to compete on. We need new metrics and tests that look at the performance and safety of each field. The NFL can and should do better,” Tretter said.
Despite complaints from Cairo Santos and what Tretter said, Chicago quarterback Justin Fields stressed that the grass is in the same condition as in 2021, although he accepted that it is something they have used to take advantage of the rivals.
“It’s always been that way, we’ve even used the condition of the field to our advantage,” Fields acknowledged late in the game against the Chiefs.
Soldier Field, home of the Bears since 1971, had artificial turf until 1988 when it changed to natural; it can hold up to 61,500 fans, the fewest in the NFL. Due to its longevity there are plans for the team to move to a new one in 2026.
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Soldier Field field worries Bears kicker