But there was another thing noticeable from that game, especially from the members of the San Francisco 49ers who were glued to their screens between the hours of 3 p.m. PT to approximately 7:15 p.m.: The injury pileup.
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It began with the Rams’ Odell Beckham, who had to leave the game during the first half with this knee injury:
Then came Matthew Stafford, who had to hobble off momentarily:
Finally, Joe Burrow left a brief scare inside SoFi Stadium:
Fortunately for the two quarterbacks, both were able to play through their contact injuries. Unfortunately for Beckham, he was unable to return.
And that’s where things got vocal by some 49er players who watched Beckham go down, with three words included in their statement: “Flip the turf.”
49er Players Want to Help ‘Flip the Turf’
All-Pro tight end George Kittle not only tweeted his reaction, but also posted a petition during the game.
“I’ve been saying, artificial turf feels like playing on cement. It’s time to play smarter, not harder! Help us #FlipTheTurf by signing the petition,” Kittle tweeted, with the petition link found here.
Kittle had a 49ers ally in defensive end Nick Bosa. The third-year defender, who in 2020 tore his ACL, was another one who was on board to passing along the petition.
“Every player is one play away from altering their career forever when playing on turf. I experienced the bad side of this (in New York versus the Jets in Week 2) and it could have been avoided. Help me #FlipTheTurf to real grass with @penningtonlawn,” Bosa tweeted out, which also included the change.org link.
Meanwhile, wide receiver/running back Deebo Samuel had a more succinct, yet vocal, reaction to witnessing the injuries come about at the Super Bowl.
They weren’t the only 49er representatives who wanted to push for field change, though.
Legendary 49er Wants to See Change
Patrick Willis, who played in Super Bowl 47 with the 49ers and was a recent finalist for the 2022 Pro Football Hall of Fame, was another staunch critic of field turf.
“Those freaking turf fields! They should band all turf for real real!!!” Willis posted.
Willis even responded to a fan’s tweet that featured the web link Kittle posted.
Willis also reacted to one man who told him that the same surface took away both of his knees.
Others Who are Behind the ‘Flip the Turf’ Movement
Kittle, Bosa, Samuel and Willis are part of a growing contingent of supporters for Pennington Lawn, the company that wants to change the surface of playing fields.
Along with the 49er players who urged others to sign the petition, there are other former NFL players who are behind the “flip the turf” movement. One is Baltimore Ravens defensive end Calais Campbell, who grew up playing on real grass.
Nick Chubb of the Cleveland Browns cited his MCL sprain in his ankle as his reason he wants to see signatures.
Lastly, former NFL running back Reggie Bush — who played in one season with the 49ers in 2015 — blasted the playing surface that was used in the Super Bowl by calling it a “plastic field.”