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Concussion, depression and the NFL

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by jgmacg, May 31, 2007.

  1. jgmacg

    jgmacg Guest

  2. zagoshe

    zagoshe Well-Known Member

    Mike Webster is probably the poster child for this
  3. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    The better question is whether the NFL will find ways to make the sport safer for the current and future players. It's a violent, dangerous sport that needs to be thoroughly reviewed from a standpoint of health and safety. The union would be wise to commission a study by an independent body (that won't have the economic conflict). It could review everything from training through game day and make recommendations.
  4. Along with Andre Waters, who of course committed suicide not too long ago.
  5. Bill Horton

    Bill Horton Active Member

    I know in my own case from taking several shots to the head and suffering multiple concussions as a baseball catcher and rugby player, doctors have told me those injuries have exacerbated my depression and ADD beyond what it would have been at my age.
    I can only imagine how much worse it is for football players who take on so many violent collisions over such a long period of time. While people tend to think rugby players play a violent game - and they do - football players wear armor and tend to be bigger, stronger and faster, making them armored missles.
    When I was younger we didn't take head injuries seriously because you couldn't rely define them like you can a sprained ankle, a torn ligament or a separated shoulder - things you can see because they swell and they cause you to limp or grow weak in an area. Brains don't swell, limp and grow weak in such an obvious way and my coaches and teammates often dismissed my head injuries as just "part of the game."
    I'm thankful when I see doctors, teams and coaches starting to take these things more seriously. It's vital for the long-term health of these men.
  6. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    This info has been out there for so long, jgmacg, and the league and the union couldn't have given a shit. For a while, I believe the union was even taking the tact that it needed to be studied better because they didn't want to deal with more claims to their disability fund. It has gotten so much attention in the last year, though, with Ted Johnson and now with Andre Waters dying, that I think they are going to address it--but only because they have to. As the story points out, one of Roger Goodell's new initiatives is to have players have a brainscan done now before they start playing in the NFL so there is a basis for comparison later on. It's a small positive, at least.
  7. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    Wouldn't a simple thing such as improving the design of the helmets help?
  8. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Riddell introduced their "Revolution" helmet 5 or 6 years ago, and I believe all the players wear it now. It really is a huge improvement over what the players were wearing. Research showed that a lot of concussions happen because of upward blows to the jaw and the side of the head, not to the top of the head, which is what a lot of people think causes all concussions. So they made the helmets project out farther on the side, kind of like a race car driver's helmet. The thing is, even the best helmet can't stop a concussion caused by incredibly large, fast men colliding with each other at top speed. It's comes with the contact.
  9. Flying Headbutt

    Flying Headbutt Moderator Staff Member

    For some reason I saw a segment on 60 Minutes when I was a kid about how a couple of players had come to start putting what was like a foam wrap around their helmet. Same color and logo and all that as on the helmet and blended in pretty well, but it wrapped around the outside. There was a lineman for the Niners who wore one, and he said while he got a lot of shit from other players, it seemed to help. I guess it turns out it wasn't much of a help either?
  10. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    Or Justin Strelzyk

    NFL players earn every penny of their salary.
  11. buckweaver

    buckweaver Active Member

    I seem to recall a compelling article in ESPN The Mag a couple summers ago about the dueling NFL doctors on this issue ...

    One was a former Jets team physician who regularly dismissed the medical warnings about concussions in favor of NFL-sanctioned research that essentially kept players on the field.

    The other doctor resigned his league-appointed post because the NFL wouldn't pay heed to his much different conclusions about players' tendency toward depression and mental illness as a result of their concussions.

    Anybody else read that story?
  12. pseudo

    pseudo Active Member

    Mark Kelso, FS for the Bills in the early 1990s, also went to the ProCap after a couple of concussions. Fans and some teammates used to kid him about it, call him "Gazoo"... but the last time I talked to him, he was doing well.
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