A hero or sissy?: Exploring media framing of NFL quarterbacks injury decisions

James Sanderson, Melinda Weathers, Alexia Grevious, Maggie Tehan, Samantha Warren

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There has been growing attention on health and safety issues in sport, most notably football. Consequently, it is important that communication scholars attend to this topic. This research explored print media framing in response to two injury<br>situations involving National Football League quarterbacks—Jay Cutler and Robert Griffin III. An analysis of 177 newspaper articles revealed 11 frames that were used to discuss these injuries. The most prominent frame for Cutler was support while<br>shifting the blame was most prominent for Griffin. The results suggest that sports journalists framing of injuries could potentially be a catalyst to shift football cultural norms towards valuing players who put their health first. The results also reveal that organizations may shoulder most of the blame for players’ injuries, which suggests a short-term setback may be more beneficial in the long-term interest of the organization.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-22
JournalCommunication and Sport
StatePublished - 2016


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