“I was completely out — 10 to 15 seconds. Miserable night, the dome had collapsed, our season had gone from bad to worse. I didn’t have to play in the game, [but] wanted to. I remember telling myself in pregame, ‘You’re an idiot. What do you stand to gain in this?’ But I thought, ‘I’ll survive this game. I’ll be fine.’ “
– Brett Favre, former NFL quarterback
Retired quarterback says after that last hit, he wondered how the other team got on the field.
For many years, he was seen by YouWager’s NFL football wagering fans as the model of tough quarterbacks, a man who was willing to play hurt. Now, Brett Favre has added his name to the long list of players that are openly suffering from the effects of concussion injuries.
In an interview with a YouWager news source, Favre said the real reason he didn’t consider an offer from the St. Louis Rams to come out of retirement, wasn’t the limitations of his physical condition at the age of 44, it was the limits of his mind these days. Favre admits to having memory problems.
Favre told YouWager’s source, “It’s a little bit scary to me.” Favre said he was worried about the future. He said he has already forgotten many periods in his life, such as one summer he spent with his 8 year-old daughter. He suspects his memory failure is related to all of the concussion related injuries he sustained in his NFL career. While Favre is remembered by online betting enthusiasts for his record 297 consecutive starts, Favre’s lack of memory may be tied to another statistic: in his 20 years in the NFL, Favre was sacked 525 times.
The league’s recent settlement resulted in a $765 million payout for former players suffering from the results of concussion injuries, but public testimony from sports heroes such as Favre make it clear that this issue is not going away anytime soon. The NFL has changed the rules, to outlaw helmet-first hits, but if remarks from players like Brandon Meriweather are any indication, the desperate strategies that defensive players will employ could be even more dangerous. Some Internet wagering fans were alarmed when Meriweather, a safety for the Washington Redskins announced that he will target the knees of opposing receivers, with the hopes of injuring players so severely that that won’t be able to play football again.
Favre is skeptical about the rule change, or any other measure that does not include more understanding of brain injuries. He told YouWager’s source, “I don’t see how you can’t change with the times and try to protect the players more because of the studies that have come out to what concussions can do. The players, either retired or some of the few players who are either killing themselves or self-destructing, studies have proven some of this is because of concussions.”
Favre said his last hit, the one that knocked him out, wasn’t the hardest he had endured during a game. Favre told YouWager’s source, “It was one of the most minor hits I’ve ever taken. The guy didn’t even hit me. He pushed me. I threw the ball and the field of course was solid ice. It was like concrete. I hit the left side of my head and the next thing I remember, I was snoring as our trainer was kind of shaking me saying, ‘Are you OK?’