As we mourn the loss of football icon Junior Seau, we now begin the whole NFL concussion/head injury discussions. Football is a extremely violent sport. Injuries, including “head” injuries occur and have retired numerous Hall of Fame careers such as Steve Young and Troy Aikman. The NFL spin zone will be busy for the next few months with its new research and new findings on head injuries.
I’m not here to talk about head injuries (although they may be the partial cause to what happened to #55); I’m here to talk about the competitive machine, which is pro sports. Can you imagine going to your regular job and every time you did something well 60,000 people cheered for you. Pro football players are celebrity like people who play the number one sport in the United States. Imagine going from the king of America’s favorite sport, to a retired ordinary citizen. That’s like asking a NASCAR driver going 200 mph to suddenly hit the breaks and do 15 mph.
Comparable to street drugs, its must be taxing to the mind and soul to quit pro sports. It’s an addictive high like no other. You see this in such athlete like Jerry Rice and Brett Favre, unable to quit the high of the NFL. These two legends, facing retirement, looked for that next high, like a crack head on a street corner. Maybe the next game, or the next game, or next season. We also witnessed this in ex-pro athletes like Lawrence Taylor, who has not played in years, still looking for that next high.
It had to be very difficult for Junior to finally quit; he retired twice from the NFL only to continue playing. He was a player, similar to Ray Lewis, who gave you 100% on every play until his body gave out. As a Raider fan, I hated when we had to play against Junior. He was a maniac powered by a V8 engine running on nitro. He was an animal on the field and a gentleman off. Why did he end his life? Was it depression, or the need for the “high” that football brought? There are many “what ifs” and speculations to this tradegy. We may never know the answers. We may never know why. All we know is he is gone. Rest in peace “buddy”.
JBB Staff Writer
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