Rather than wait for our courts to gradually wake up, state legislatures should accelerate the process by adopting laws defining and criminalizing something we can call “flagrant sports battery.” This could protect not just N.F.L. players, but athletes in high school and college. These laws would not apply to customary hard hits, personal fouls or the normally accepted aggressive play that is part of the game. But they would proscribe aberrant conduct like hit lists and bounties, and penalize other malicious actions. For instance, the Tennessee Titans’ Albert Haynesworth raking his cleats across the face of a defenseless player in 2006 (it took 30 stitches to close the wounds).