NFL bans 'Shredder mask' for Raiders' Tuck, Mack

NFL bans 'Shredder mask' for Raiders' Tuck, Mack
June 30, 2014, 4:30 pm
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Khalil Mack plans to ask the NFL to wear the unusual facemask this offseason, but that appeal will most likely be denied. (USATSI)

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Khalil Mack will likely lose his appeal to wear an unorthodox facemask.

The Raiders’ rookie outside linebacker wore a specially-designed protector in college arranged to prevent offensive linemen from poking him through open portions of his facemask, but, according to the NFL Network, those designs will be banned for the upcoming season.

That will also impact Raiders defensive end Justin Tuck, who wore an identical design he called a “Shredder Mask” -- named after the popular arch-villain in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic -- after appealing for the rare design to the league office years ago.

New facemask guidelines were outlined in a memo obtained by NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport on Monday afternoon.

From the NFL Network story on the issue:
“A study conducted by the University of New Hampshire for the NFL states that the added weight of the masks negatively affects the structure of the helmet, can cause neck fatigue that could lead to a more head-down posture during contact and can provide a false sense of security during tackling.”

Mack said that he planned to ask the NFL to wear the unusual facemask this offseason, but that appeal will most likely be denied.

Tuck could retain his facemask, but he must regain medical approval prior to this season despite being previously approved.

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