Wednesday, May 9, 2012

NFL: Players Life Expectancy

This past week Junior Seau has been making NFL headlines.
This talented linebacker committed suicide and was pronounced dead on May 2, 2012.
I've said many prayers for his  family with this traumatic loss.  May he rest in peace.
Watching his mother speak on behalf of her son brought me to tears.
While he spent many years in different uniforms, he was also a valued member of the NE Patriots.


His death triggered a very public outburst blaming the sport of football for the trauma to his brain which led to his self inflicted demise.  This makes sense considering the intensity of the sport.  There has reportedly been over 1500 lawsuits pursued against the NFL claiming the sport was the blame.
I hope this isn't true for the sake of the men who are married to playing the game!

After these accusations, a medical study was conduction to research the validity of these harsh suggestions.  The results of the study were that NFL players statistically live longer than the general public.  

This is also makes sense considering the health conditions these players need to reach in order to be successful at the game.  You need to be conditioned and trained to take a hit.  You need to be on top of your diet to make sure you are intaking the right foods.  You even need to be dedicated to sleeping the appropriate number of hours.  As a football player, heath should be your number one priority.
How do I know all this?  My brother was the captain on the varsity team for years!

You can read the full findings of the study here.

Let's send as many good vibes or prayers as we can to the family & friends of Junior Seau.

Let's also hope that the accusations against the NFL are inaccurate for the sake of all the other men dedicating years of their life to the sport.
As a huge football fan, the well being of the players is a huge concern of mine.

Do you think football is the cause of reported suicides amongst NFL players?

78 comments:

  1. I would like this study to create outcry about boxing. I hate boxing, it is not a game at all just like golf. And I find lazy people using these exceptions as excuses to push health maniacs refrain from sports. Driving causes accidents, should all give up driving then? I have heard of suicides in s/w companies more than this. Did the suicide count in Asia affect iPad sales in US anyway?

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    1. To me sports like boxing and and rugby are way more intense than football when it comes to physical injuries.

      My ex was a professional boxer in line for the Olympics. He was great at what he did, but dumber than a brick. He used to tease that it's "boxer brain". Sigh...

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    2. Omg a professional boxer dear. Sigh!

      Boxer brain?

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    3. Never again! Tell Esperanza to stay away from boxers.... hahahahaha

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    4. Dear im sure Esperanza be able to beat any boxer sigh!!

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    5. LMAO!!!! I bet she could ;)

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  2. It's hard to say what the cause may be. The manager of Wales football team Gary Speed hung himself a few months ago. This was a man who had a successful career as a player and was now an international manager but he still took his own life. It seems this was due to problems in his marriage rather than the sport itself.

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    1. There are quite a few football players that have committed suicide. Then again, dentists are one of the top careers that committ suicide. What do you blame on that?

      I can see where it's coming from, but I don't think that's the acutal problem.

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  3. Ugh, it's very scary! I wouldn't be surprised if there were long term consequences of getting hit in the head for years...

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    1. I'm sure there are consequences, but I don't see suicide as one of them. I see more physical effects.

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  4. It makes me wonder. I played 3 1/2 years in high school and quit due to injuries and it makes me wonder sometimes, I took a few shots to the head in my playing career, that could explain my blog, ha

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    1. My brother played football for 15 years. My father played and coached. They are very healthy and don't show any signs of mental or physical repercussions. Well, aside from where bones were boken and muscles torn.

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  5. 1500 out of how many players? It would be interesting to know what percentage that is! Really hard to tell...so many different variables in there besides football!

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    1. I'm not sure if it's the acutal players pursuing the lawsuits. They were just stating in general.

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  6. It's so sad. What a moving post.

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    1. Very, very sad. I actually cried watching his mother plead to God to take her life instead of her son's. What a tragedy...

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  7. this is one of the reasons why I've never understood American love for all things competitive. They teach their kids to be competitive from the very early age and to see competitions and rivals everywhere, and that they are losers if they're not winners. Such a sad sad sad thing...

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    1. This is just an American theory? Shows how much I know...

      It all comes down to being the best. You aren't anything if you aren't the best. Maybe that's why the American "middle" class is dwindling down to nothing.

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  8. Nah football is not the reason. A lot of sport players often make bad choices due to the increase in pay and the fame, and then others have problems anyone would have it just happens that they're football players. A few are always going to have issues, but that's America for you. A bunch of people finger-pointing at something that's not the real cause.

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    1. I don't think football is to blame either. I think that the players are trained and conditioned for the roughness of the sport. But, I could see where the accusations are coming from.

      I agree that a few need to fingerpoint something instead of accepting the real issue.

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  9. Yeah I've seen the same thing with boxing and even wwe wrestling, people blaming the sport for what happened. When in reality what is really going on is the people need to place blame somewhere, so they choice the sport or whatever else to blame. It is never the person themselves, oh no they were so happy and so this and so that, we can't blame them let's blame the sport, the tv, the dog, etc.

    There may be an underlying cause with the sport because of the life choices it allows people to make with the money and fame they get, but in the end it is the person who decides their choices and the person who snaps and kills themselves, not the sport, the tv or the dog that did it. But it's people nature to try and console themselves by placing blame elsewhere.

    So do football do it? Nope! Shame it had to come to it, but the final decision was his.

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    1. They are saying, since he's a linebacker, all those rough hits he took caused trauma to the brain and cognitive damage. It makes sense, but then wouldn't everyone else be suffering from the same symptons? Also, the player needs to know their limits. This player announced his retirement 2-3 times. They also say that each hit a football player takes is comparable to a car accident.

      But, when push comes to shove, I think they are pin pointing blame on the game. There are many careers that have very high suicide rates. It could be the stress of fulfilling your contract more than the hit. Who knows...

      But, the study did show that it was inaccurate. Now, of course, people saying that the study is inaccurate. One big circle!!!

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    2. Yeah it is possible and likely that some get brain and/or cognitive damage from a hit. I guess it all depends on how they get hit too. But I agree, if it was the case then not all but the vast majority would be suffering from the same thing. Wow each hit is comparable to a car accident? No wonder they only play so many games a year. Yeah one has to know their limits and not be blinded by the spotlight and fame and such.

      LOL dentists supposedly have a high suicide rate and they don't go through much physical altercations. Stress leads to it too, there are prob a number of factors but it is ridiculous just to blame the sport for it.

      Studies are always like that too, one big run around as people will use them to find the results they want or don't want.

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    3. But I can't imagine a dentist being a stressful job either? I mean, it's not life or death to pull a tooth. I need to research that one a bit more.

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  10. i think some people (not only players) have a lot of pressure and stress and maybe the players more!
    You know is not only for win the terrible is all for money too!is so sad I dont like these competetive things!

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    1. I totally agree with you Gloria! I don't think it's the sport itself, but the mental and physical stress of it certainly doesn't help.

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    2. Strees is terrible dear so bad:(

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    3. Yes it is!!!!! Oh my, I think I'm the queen of stressing for no reason!

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  11. I really enjoyed this post, Jax. As a fellow Pats fan, it was just surreal when I heard that Junior had taken his own life. He always seemed so happy and enthusiastic whenever the cameras were on him! It's just so sad. I wonder how much of these NFL suicides are fueled by missing the spotlight? Most of these guys are the center of attention from childhood, through high school, through college, and on to the NFL. It has to be at least a little depressing when that spotlight dims and they can no longer do the one thing they have always done. R.I.P. #55, and thanks for writing this Jax.

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    1. First off, I love that we got another Pats fan on my page!! As a NYer, I always feel like the odd man out ;) lol

      It was VERY sad when he passed. I agree with you about the spotlight. Maybe that's why he returned after announcing his first retirement. We'll never know, but I hope for the sake of my boys, that this is not true.

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    2. *nodding in agreement*

      "As a NYer, I always feel like the odd man out ;) lol"

      Just kidding, Jax!!!

      Go Giants!!!!

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    3. Ohh, REAL nice Elsie!!!!!

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  12. I was so sad to hear about his passing! There's a special place in my heart for victims of Suicide and it really makes me SO sad. I'm a big believer in the domino effect that depression and/or mental disease can have on one's well-being and I always think of suicide as someone dying from an "illness". Because- they did.

    With that said, I certainly can't speak to an educated level about Football vs. brain injury. I will say that I would imagine that blows in practices and games over a number of years are likely to take a toll. I don't necessarily think football is to "blame" but I can see the correlation between the two. I look forward to hearing the results of the study on Junior.

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    1. Yes, it's a very sad story! I agree with you that suicide is an illness. It's a very sad and tragic illnes...

      I really hope that this is not the cause, but all those hits and blows from other huge linebackers has to eventually catch up with you. While it makes sense, I can't see it causing someone to commit suicide. The statistics just don't match up.

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  13. So sad.

    Players go in knowing that there is risk of injury, just like any other physical profession. I am glad the study disproved that they have a shorter life span. I don't see it as any more dangerous than construction or any other physical labor really.

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  14. I worry that the players might be killing them selves not cause of physical trama recieved but because of stress and frustration and a feeling of worthlessness. Pretty much the same reason others kill them selves.

    What percentage of football players kill themselves? What percentage of people kill themself?

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    1. I believe more of it is stress and frustration. Especially with football, sport's careers are very high stress! You contract is based upon how many hits you make, yards you run, and etc. If you don't perform up to par and push your body's limits you may not make the money you want.

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  15. @Berserc,
    Athletes are not anywhere near the top of the suicides by profession list: http://www.businessinsider.com/most-suicidal-occupations-2011-10#1-marine-engineers-are-189-times-more-likely-to-commit-suicide-19

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    1. Thanks!! I really don't think they stand any ground with the football suicide thing. Especially after that...

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  16. There is a lot more stress other than the head injuries to NFL players, I'm sure - a really sad story nonetheless...

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  17. i have to say, while i think these players are aware that they play a very dangerous sport and there are major injuries that can happen, i'm glad that they're using some of these tragedies to learn more about the brain and at least give them more informed information about their jobs.

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    1. You're right about that! Education of what you're getting yourself into is very important when making a final decision.

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  18. A similar tragic story involved former Chicago Bear Dave Duerson. It must be very difficult for these guys who are use to being so independent and self sufficient to being reduced to depending on others. I remember seeing Dave on a local Chicago talk show with an NFL player who could no longer even support his family because his arms were injured so severely in the NFL. At the time, Dave did not seem to be very sympathetic to the man's plight, because he was one of these self-reliance, pull yourself up by your bootstraps kinda guys. Ironically, Duerson seemed to end up in the same boat as the guy he seemingly did not have any empathy for when the shoe was on the other foot. Regarding the violence of the sport, people often argue whether or not boxing should be abolished. It is hard to imagine sports history without figures like Muhammad Ali... I guess you have to weigh whether or not, violent sports contribute enough positive things to society to make the downside of the brutal violence worth it.

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    1. Oh wow...what a story! People need to learn to be a little sympathetic towards others. They don't know the real deal until they actually live their lives.

      Great point made!!! :)

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  19. I was so shocked when the news broke. What person doesn't recognize that face or at least the name?! So very, very sad. My heart and prayers go out to his family and friends.

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    1. I was very shocked as well! He was a great linebacker with an amazing history. Prayers for all involved.

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  20. I hope that they can just take this as a lesson and really learn from it.

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  21. This is a very sad story and so often the first thing the media does is to "blame" something or someone. Compassion for this man who felt so bad that he chose to take his own life is the appropriate response.

    I'm wondering Jax, what these guys experience physically later in life with all the trauma to their bodies during a game. I thinking, knees, back etc. Our rugby players tend to have a hard time when they get older. Joint damage is the biggest problem for them when they hit their 50's

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    1. It really is a very sad story. It's sad that the media is focusing on this instead of focusing on highlighting all the great things in his life and career.

      I'm sure the physical effects as they got older are awful. I can't imagine getting mauled by a 350 pound man and walking away scott free. That's interesting about the rugby players. Is rugby more intense than football? I would imagine so...

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  22. I''m getting ready to paint 3 female gunslinger figures and I'd like to name one of them Jax. The one I have picked out for you is wearing a sexy cowboy hat and has long hair. I'm hoping to post them Saturday as a "Work In Progress" meaning I'll only have part of them painted. I'll post them again when they are finished.

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    1. Oh, Anne...you have me smiling ear to ear!! I love that and can't wait to see the amazing work you do! Sexy cowboy hat and long hair? Oh, so perfect!! :D

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    2. Thank you for saying yes Jax!

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  23. Lol, I wish I had read your blog post before I wrote my blog, sigh...Either way,great information via the study. :-)

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    1. LOL That's ok...we are allowed to talk about the same things ;)

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  24. I cited you in my blog article and linked back to here :-)

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  25. My ex bro in law played football for the steelers back in the 90s, and he's never had anything but positive things to say about being an athlete. He's one of the most positive ppl I know.

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    1. Really? That's great to know!!! They should add him to the studies!

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  26. He was one of the best linebackers of our time and certainly the best the San Diego Chargers ever had when he was with them through most of his career. (although he was on the Patriots as you said when he died). I did not see the speech his mother made but I'm sure it was moving. May he rest in peace.

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    1. Yes, he was a Charger at heart ;) He was only on the Patriots for 2 years. They signed him b/c it was the year that the whole defense got injured. He was a GREAT linebacker!! I really hope he does rest in peace and that his friends and family find comfort.

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  27. I saw that interview with his mom and had to turn it over, it was to heart breaking to watch. His family needs our prayers for sure, Jax!

    I'm not sure if the injuries from the NFL is to blame for his suicide or not...I don't like how there is now a ton of people trying to sue them. Not now. Respect his family. Allow them peace.

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    1. Oh, it really was heart breaking!! So, so sad!

      They really should respect his friends and family. People love any excuse to start an uproar!

      Delete
  28. this was so sad. when his mother gave that interview, my heart went out to her. i think he tried to kill himself once before by driving off the road. he said otherwise, but this has been going on for awhile. i think they'll be studying his brain. so sad.
    http://www.averysweetblog.com/

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    1. I heard they will be studying his brain. I say leave his brain alone and let him rest in peace. So sad...

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  29. Jax thsnks for stopping by:) Did you see in my sidebar Esperanzs? With a denim hat:)
    In other pic is my son gerardo, they are twins lol

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    1. Ohh, I just looked now! I can't see very well b/c it's tiny...but it loos like you have a lovely family!!! I love denim hat! Too cute :)

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    2. she is so cute but make me cry:(

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  30. I'm pretty sure it's something else. You don't see this kind of stuff happening to hockey players.

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    1. Hockey isn't as intense, but I totally get what you're saying!

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  31. this is very said, jax... may he rest in peace...

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  32. Excellent Working Dear Friend Nice Information Share all over the world.olympic station cyclesGod Bless You..olympic park cycles

    ReplyDelete

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