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My Dinner With Andre

CTE could end the game of Football as we know it

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I kind of look at football and CTE when ARE was playing like cigarettes pre-1980 or so (minus the marketing to kids angle.

The public wasn't aware of the high risk of cancer from smoking years ago. The industry tried to bury the research as long as possible. Now the truth is out and everyone knows the harm that can be done and is aware of it.

When ARE started playing the risks of long-term serious brain trauma from playing weren't known. The NFL even tried to bury the research on it. Now, everybody is well aware of said risk.

Knowing what everybody knows now, if you want to keep smoking, fine, but don't complain if you get lung cancer.

Knowing what everybody knows now, if you want to keep playing football, fine, but don't complain if you get CTE.

Fair comparison.

Although I don't know the statistics well enough to say whether there is as strong a correlation between playing football and getting CTE as there is of smoking and getting heart disease or lung cancer, and I'd argue that there are better benefits to playing football than smoking.

The actuaries hired by the NFL cited a 28% risk of CTE.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/13/sports/football/actuarial-reports-in-nfl-concussion-deal-are-released.html?_r=0

That's nearly three times greater than the chance of getting lung cancer from smoking cigarettes (10%).

So based on what we know now, you're MUCH more likely to get CTE from playing in the NFL than you are to get lung cancer from smoking cigarettes.

Well. That sucks.

Not that simple though. Lung cancer is far from the only problem cigarette smokers face at alarming rates. Heart disease, obesity, etc, etc, etc

And football....at its core....is exercise.

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

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The actuaries hired by the NFL cited a 28% risk of CTE.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/13/sports/football/actuarial-reports-in-nfl-concussion-deal-are-released.html?_r=0

That's nearly three times greater than the chance of getting lung cancer from smoking cigarettes (10%).

So based on what we know now, you're MUCH more likely to get CTE from playing in the NFL than you are to get lung cancer from smoking cigarettes.

Well. That sucks.

Not that simple though. Lung cancer is far from the only problem cigarette smokers face at alarming rates. Heart disease, obesity, etc, etc, etc

And football....at its core....is exercise.

Lung cancer isn't the only problem smokers get...just as CTE isn't the only problem football players get (chronic pain, multiple surgeries, environment that encourages behaviors leading to painkiller addictions, etc.).

Again: You are much more likely to get CTE from football than lung cancer from smoking. Think about that.

Sure you COULD play football and not get CTE, just as most people who drive while drunk don't get into an accident, and most people who smoke don't get cancer. Whether you can accept responsibility for those odds if you choose to pursue professional football is an individual decision and that individual's responsibility to accept the consequences of that decision.

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

I get where you're coming from on the general injury risk with football in terms of spinal cord injuries, broken bones, eventual arthritis, etc. Everybody knew those were possible. They were known risks.

The concussion aftereffects though just weren't known to the general public when we were kids. The public didn't know that playing football may lead you to want to pull out a shotgun and shoot yourself in the chest like Seau did. Or basically have some of the symptoms of dementia at age 36 like ARE was talking about.

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I remember him when he played at Indiana.

Its kind of funny that he has as many career SuperBowl TD passes as Dan Marino.

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

I get where you're coming from on the general injury risk with football in terms of spinal cord injuries, broken bones, eventual arthritis, etc. Everybody knew those were possible. They were known risks.

The concussion aftereffects though just weren't known to the general public when we were kids. The public didn't know that playing football may lead you to want to pull out a shotgun and shoot yourself in the chest like Seau did. Or basically have some of the symptoms of dementia at age 36 like ARE was talking about.

Just speaking for myself, when I was 12 years old I never really considered anything bad would happen to me outside of some bruises when I started playing tackle football, nor was I told that would happen. Now, when I started playing and as I progressed through high school those risks became more clear, but by that point you don't want to give up on the team, especially in high school.

And never did I consider that I would suffer long term brain trauma for the rest of my life. Maybe you guys thought about that, I don't know.

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

I get where you're coming from on the general injury risk with football in terms of spinal cord injuries, broken bones, eventual arthritis, etc. Everybody knew those were possible. They were known risks.

The concussion aftereffects though just weren't known to the general public when we were kids. The public didn't know that playing football may lead you to want to pull out a shotgun and shoot yourself in the chest like Seau did. Or basically have some of the symptoms of dementia at age 36 like ARE was talking about.

Just speaking for myself, when I was 12 years old I never really considered anything bad would happen to me outside of some bruises when I started playing tackle football, nor was I told that would happen. Now, when I started playing and as I progressed through high school those risks became more clear, but by that point you don't want to give up on the team, especially in high school.

And never did I consider that I would suffer long term brain trauma for the rest of my life. Maybe you guys thought about that, I don't know.

I don't think anybody thought about long-term brain tramua. As Axe alluded to, ringing someone's bell was what you looked forward to doing if you played D.

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Oh common. The dude is obviously broke and looking for a free hand out via lawsuit or other bs

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I'm so glad parents finally have the information that football isn't the healthiest endeavor for their children.

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I'm so glad parents finally have the information that football isn't the healthiest endeavor for their children.

Now we just need to spread the bad news to the Soccer moms around the world

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

I get where you're coming from on the general injury risk with football in terms of spinal cord injuries, broken bones, eventual arthritis, etc. Everybody knew those were possible. They were known risks.

The concussion aftereffects though just weren't known to the general public when we were kids. The public didn't know that playing football may lead you to want to pull out a shotgun and shoot yourself in the chest like Seau did. Or basically have some of the symptoms of dementia at age 36 like ARE was talking about.

Just speaking for myself, when I was 12 years old I never really considered anything bad would happen to me outside of some bruises when I started playing tackle football, nor was I told that would happen. Now, when I started playing and as I progressed through high school those risks became more clear, but by that point you don't want to give up on the team, especially in high school.

And never did I consider that I would suffer long term brain trauma for the rest of my life. Maybe you guys thought about that, I don't know.

Did you ever consider that spending your life as a paraplegic was a possibility?

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I can hardly wait for this whiny-*ss generation to age >>>> let's blame all that ails one in this life on someone else = fun.

I don't know that this needs to be a generation gap thing. It's pretty much accepted medical science that head injuries caused from playing football result in elevated risks of getting CTE.

It's not like when Jonas Salk invented the polio vaccine the old timers went around and said, "darn kids always whining about their polio."

I wish I had been warned that the 8 years spent caddying as a youth would be bad for my shoulders, back, hips, feet, skin... ... ...

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Maybe they din't know the risks of "CTE" per se, but nobody can say that they din't realize playing football was dangerous. That was kind of the goal in my day--to see if you could take someone out with a good hit. Not so much anything dirty, just a good, hard hit to ring someone's bell, make them drop the ball, have them thinking twice about coming into your area again, etc. If you make a conscious choice to play football, especially at the professional level, you are consciously accepting the risk of serious injury, up to and including complete paralysis and even death. These kinds of injuries DID occur in the past, you know.

I do think that someone should break the news that war is dangerous, though. Maybe they would stop having them if it was widely understood that war could cause serious injury or even death.

I get where you're coming from on the general injury risk with football in terms of spinal cord injuries, broken bones, eventual arthritis, etc. Everybody knew those were possible. They were known risks.

The concussion aftereffects though just weren't known to the general public when we were kids. The public didn't know that playing football may lead you to want to pull out a shotgun and shoot yourself in the chest like Seau did. Or basically have some of the symptoms of dementia at age 36 like ARE was talking about.

Just speaking for myself, when I was 12 years old I never really considered anything bad would happen to me outside of some bruises when I started playing tackle football, nor was I told that would happen. Now, when I started playing and as I progressed through high school those risks became more clear, but by that point you don't want to give up on the team, especially in high school.

And never did I consider that I would suffer long term brain trauma for the rest of my life. Maybe you guys thought about that, I don't know.

Did you ever consider that spending your life as a paraplegic was a possibility?

After playing it for a couple years? Yeah I did. So I did certain things on the field that minimized that risk. It's good to know those sorts of things when you're doing them though.

I don't understand how people being aware of the risk of CTE and former players speaking about their experiences is so negative. You're not a "tough guy" just because you're ignorant about what happen to you if you do something.

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I have no issue with awareness, it's the transference of blame & litigation that I have issue with. Media running with it like it was some great cover-up by the NFL.

It's also odd that Randle just know has had this lightbulb moment that baseball careers are potentially longer & easier on the body.

Edited by psygolf

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I have no issue with awareness, it's the transference of blame & litigation that I have issue with. Media running with it like it was some great cover-up by the NFL.

It's also odd that Randle just know has had this lightbulb moment that baseball careers are potentially longer & easier on the body.

Well, the NFL doctors did send Omalu a letter accusing him of fraud and suggesting he should retract his report, which generally results in a Doctor being discredited and losing their license, despite a near consensus agreement now on his findings.

What would you call that?

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It's tough to say, "he knew the risks", when we're talking about: (1) a 20-year old, ie, immature (and I don't mean that in a pejorative sense) kid who's making the decision; and (2) long-tail risks that manifest themselves 15 years down the road.

There's a reason why Chris Borland is like the only guy to walk away from the sport and turn down millions in his early 20s.

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It's tough to say, "he knew the risks", when we're talking about: (1) a 20-year old, ie, immature (and I don't mean that in a pejorative sense) kid who's making the decision; and (2) long-tail risks that manifest themselves 15 years down the road.

There's a reason why Chris Borland is like the only guy to walk away from the sport and turn down millions in his early 20s.

Many MLB players were 3 sport stars and made a choice because of the risks inherent to each sport...it's a joke for Randle to claim "if I knew..." He made a fiscal choice long ago.

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It's tough to say, "he knew the risks", when we're talking about: (1) a 20-year old, ie, immature (and I don't mean that in a pejorative sense) kid who's making the decision; and (2) long-tail risks that manifest themselves 15 years down the road.

There's a reason why Chris Borland is like the only guy to walk away from the sport and turn down millions in his early 20s.

Many MLB players were 3 sport stars and made a choice because of the risks inherent to each sport...it's a joke for Randle to claim "if I knew..." He made a fiscal choice long ago.

Idk, aren't you making assumptions here? You don't think an athlete choosing the MLB over a potential NFL career had more to do with being able to land a million-dollar-signing bonus out of high school and thereby forgo college, ie, turning pro earlier?

Edited by My Dinner With Andre

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Antwaan Randle El on The Dan Patrick Show (Full Interview) 1/20/16

Patrick asked Randle El if playing football and the nine seasons he spent in the NFL was worth it:

"Yeah, I’d say it was worth it. I look back on the things I experienced... winning the Super Bowl and being compensated the way I was with the Steelers and the Redskins, you look at those things, the memories that you’ve got and the platform I’ve been able from that point on, it certainly has given me this idea that playing the game of football has been worth it.

"But I look at the pain I experience now, I always think about talking with different players, if I had another path, could I have taken another path? And knowing what I know now, I would venture down a different road. And when I say venture down a different road, obviously I had an opportunity to play professional (baseball) but didn’t at the time because my parents thought it would be great for me to go to college and get my degree. I didn’t agree with them at the time..."

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Financially he probably made the correct decision, the same people that ask why didnt he just go play baseball when he was drafted are the same people who ask why these young men go broke. He got his degree and then got an almost 1 million dollar signing bonus to play football. If he doesnt do well in the NFL, he still has a million dollars and his college degree. If he doesn't do well in the MLB he has little money and no college degree. These high school football heroes that call these retired NFL players losers for complaining about their BRAIN injuries are just ridiculous.. to some making life changing money at the cost of life changing injuries is worth it, to others it is not

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I have no issue with awareness, it's the transference of blame & litigation that I have issue with. Media running with it like it was some great cover-up by the NFL.

It's also odd that Randle just know has had this lightbulb moment that baseball careers are potentially longer & easier on the body.

Well, the NFL doctors did send Omalu a letter accusing him of fraud and suggesting he should retract his report, which generally results in a Doctor being discredited and losing their license, despite a near consensus agreement now on his findings.

What would you call that?

It's the very definition of a cover up.

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That Concussion movie was garbage and I couldn't even make it through the entire thing. We get it; the NFL was trying to cover up concussion issues. Don't need a dramatized movie version of documented reports to try to further demonize the NFL.

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I can hardly wait for this whiny-*ss generation to age >>>> let's blame all that ails one in this life on someone else = fun.

I don't know that this needs to be a generation gap thing. It's pretty much accepted medical science that head injuries caused from playing football result in elevated risks of getting CTE.

It's not like when Jonas Salk invented the polio vaccine the old timers went around and said, "darn kids always whining about their polio."

I kind of look at football and CTE when ARE was playing like cigarettes pre-1980 or so (minus the marketing to kids angle.

The public wasn't aware of the high risk of cancer from smoking years ago. The industry tried to bury the research as long as possible. Now the truth is out and everyone knows the harm that can be done and is aware of it.

When ARE started playing the risks of long-term serious brain trauma from playing weren't known.

I can keenly remember family members joking about football players being "punchy" way back in the 80s. The term punch drunk refers to Dementia Pugilistica is now considered a sub-type of chronic traumatic encephalopathy, but it was the original "CTE".

I'm pretty sure back then we knew that repeated blows to the head weren't good. Boxing was especially bad, but I remember football players being wary of concussions at the very least in the 90's if not the 80s. Post Concussion Syndrome was a thing, and I can remember players (Al Toon, Wayne Chrebet) retiring early due to it.

I'm not sure how Randle El could have grown up around sports and not at least have a clue that getting hit in the head multiple times is bad for you later in life.

Look at the dates along with the content in some of these articles:

http://newsok.com/article/2481637

http://www.nytimes.com/1994/01/26/sports/super-bowl-xxviii-a-common-nfl-question-how-many-fingers-do-you-see.html

http://www.si.com/vault/1994/12/19/132920/the-worst-case-doctors-warn-that-repeated-concussions-can-lead-to-permanent-brain-dysfunction

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1988-03-04/sports/8804040445_1_life-expectancy-heart-attack-average-lifespan

It's despicable that the NFL tried to cover up the danger to players, but at the same I don't see how a kid in the 1990s wouldn't realize that baseball and basketball were safer than football both in the short and long run.

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