Let’s face it: children tackling each other is dangerous because professional NFL players tackling each other is dangerous. It’s even more problematic to allow children to be injured at a younger age let alone in their adulthood for entertainment. Many believe youth shouldn't play tackle football until 14 or 15 years old.
Ann McKee, director of the Boston University CTE Center in Massachusetts, says it's riskier for children to play tackle football. Children are at risk of brain injuries, and this can cause memory loss, confusion and/or anger issues at an early age.
Joey Blethen, recreation director in Tega Cay, S.C., told Sports Illustrated's Muscle and Medicine, he would feel responsible if any child was hurt playing tackle football. Tega Cay made the decision to keep kids safe by banning kids ages 5 to 11 from tackle football. Instead, children at this age play flag football only.
The impetus for the decision arose last November when Blethen saw an ABC news report about the 11 high school football players across the country who died in 2015 (four from head trauma). “I asked myself a question,” said Blethen. “Could I live with myself if a participant in our tackle football program were to become seriously injured, paralyzed or even worse?”