Anthony Adams' son won't play football

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by riczaj01, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Assistant Head Coach
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    I don't know. My son played football. In my family, in this mid-west town, most everyone plays football. My family members have played on local teams since the 1920's. At any given time, we usually have a couple of guys in the NFL from one of the five local high schools (we currently have two at the moment in the NFL from my son's tiny high school of 400 kids), and countless kids from here have played on major college programs.

    Football here is THE sport.

    None of the kids around here are any worse for having played. They've learned a lot about sacrifice and teamwork in the process & built friendships that last a lifetime (not too long ago, I had an old 80+ year old guy, who was an ex-OL center, telling me about how he played with my great-uncle on a great 1920's team). My boss tells me stories about her uncle's days with the KC Chiefs. I guess we're like Ditka's "Grabowski's" here. Yes, everyone pretty much gets injured, including my son (one night he was in a wheelchair at the local hospital after a game). But he healed up and was fine. He's always been a smart kid academically (he's a National Merit Scholar studying this fall at one of the top universities in the world, in Europe) so it's not like he's an idiot from football. I will always believe that football gave him a lot of self-esteem and character - and he learned discipline and working as a team with others to reach a common goal (they were Illinois State Champions and he will remember that year forever).

    On the one hand, I do see the brutality of the game. Certainly a lot of kids just like play shooter video games alone in their bedrooms - and certainly they stay safe there. I'm not sure that's good either.

    Hopefully they can adjust the rules, and equipment so that it's not quite as dangerous as it is. But hey, you can get hurt just riding in a car - and killed for that matter. So who knows....
     
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  2. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka
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    I know what you're saying Warlock, but the reality is they have them for racing and they have them for BMX motocross, and the levels of impact and g forces involved are far greater in those then in football. w/the BILLIONS the NFL has, if they REALLY wanted to they could find something.

    SFB, not really proving anything there, who's said hey I won't put my kid into football, but MMA/Boxing hells yes!
     
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  3. ChiCityBears

    ChiCityBears Veteran

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    I was downtown recently, and I believe I saw AA. I just looked at a pic of him. Looks like it was him.
     
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  4. short faced bear

    short faced bear Assistant Head Coach
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    Don't think I was trying to PROVE anything to you buddy. In reality there are far worse choices than football. My ex wife would freak if our kid decided to get into NASCAR. Although the danger is lessened to a huge degree ultimately when it happens it is grizzly. Me, I would just freak out b/c it's a redneck sport lolol.
     
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  5. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka
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    SFB, but just b/c there are worse doesn't mean their aren't plenty that are better. Golf, Baseball are both sports that you can have careers w/out making it to the big leagues and are both far more safe, Basketball is a world wide giving someone the ability to play even if you don't make the NBA and again is far more safe. Women's soccer is equally risky for head inj's, but mens soccer is well below and again world sport where you don't have to be in the big leagues to have a career.
    Or hell, even if you are just looking for a sport to teach your kids something any of those sports are safer w/out the potential for long term brain issues.

    Football you have 1 real route to play as a pro and make a good living compared to the health risk, and that's the NFl, and it's a shorter lifespan then those other ones. Listen my son's expected to be 6'7" 265 or so lb's will have very long arms and if he wanted/needed to he would easily be able to add 50 healthy lbs more and still be okay, and everyone when he was a baby and a toddler would talk about how he could play football, even the dr's. He's 8, and in the last 5 years the information that has come out has completely changed my mind on the idea of ever wanting him to see the field. And I wouldn't want him in NASCAR, boxing, or MMA either just b/c some are worse doesn't make football safe.
     
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  6. short faced bear

    short faced bear Assistant Head Coach
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    Sure there are plenty that are better. Football is what it is and there is a risk. I don't expect my kid to ever play as a pro or even college and will probably not play that much so the risk is very mitigated. I worry a lot more about him going to war or a regular hourly paying hazardous career.

    Of all the things I worry about, football is way down on that list.
     
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  7. butka

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    Yeah, but the game is a lot different now than when the 80 year old played. It's a much bigger, faster, and stronger game. I'm 10 years removed from playing in college and I have a few buddies who played their whole lives that are struggling to get out of bed in the morning at age 31 and 32. For years after I finished, I would randomly see black spots in my field of vision. That has just recently gone away for the most part. However, most of the effects aren't immediate and the brain damage (CTE) doesn't normally affects ones intelligence or aptitude, it affects their mood and behavior. I work in a field that is highly regarded for it's intellectual endeavors and is full of bright people, but that doesn't mean I don't worry about what I might be 20 years from now. It's not my wit or astuteness that I'm afraid will disappear. It's mood swings, anxiety, and depression that I fear. Look at Duerson, Seau, all of those guys. They weren't bumbling morons, their personalities changed. They hurt those around them and it was completely out of character.

    This isn't about love of the game. We all love the game. I lived and breathed it for years. I'm surrounded by friends who coach, scout, and work in all levels of football, from high school to the NFL. My best friends are all guys I played with and I certainly cherish those relationships. Anthony Adams and all of these other players (Adrian Peterson, Bart Scott, Kurt Warner, Terry Bradshaw, I could go on and on) who say the same thing about their children were in the game far deeper than you or I. I agree about the character building of football, I've never participated in a sport than even remotely matched the discipline and team work learned from the game (I certainly didn't play every sport known to man though). However, seeing what it's done physically to a lot of people around me, I think I'll find an alternative for my son unless something drastic changes. Of course participating in a sport is better than riding a couch and playing video games all day, but the world isn't football or video games, and nothing else. There's other sports and endeavors in life to learn these lessons from. I'm not telling you what to do or think, that's up to you. I'm telling you though, first hand that this is real and it's scary. The reasons behind your skepticism and use of anectdotal stories don't really prove against the possible effects of playing. I don't know you, but from afar, you seem like a reasonable guy from your posts on the board, and you also seem to be in denial because of the culture of your small town.
     
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  8. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Assistant Head Coach
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    All good points, and I agree with most of what you said. Also, I can certainly understand, and respect any parents decision to not let their son play football. A case can be made either way, as to whether or not to let a son play.

    The sport needs to be safer than it is. My only point is that "life" is not always perfectly safe, and if people want to play the sport of football, then I'm fine with that. I read the news each morning about all of the horrific stuff going on in the world around us. In the grand scheme of things, there's worse stuff going on than my son choosing to play football.

    And a lot of people (me too) are concerned about making the sport safer, and I believe we're beginning to see some progress that can be built upon as we move forward. It is a huge concern at all levels from Pop Warner leagues to the NFL.

    FWIW, my kids enjoy other sports too, from tennis, golf, and basketball to soccer. But I let my son play football too. You're right that it's been part of the fabric of thousands of towns across America for close to 100 years. Football is a part of America and our culture and history. It can be a violent sport for sure, but instead of bailing on the sport, let's see if there are ways to reduce the risk of injury. I'm confident there will be a number of ways to do this. I'm not expecting a magic bullet to make it a Madden-game experience, but perhaps a number of helpful rules and equipment ideas, implemented over time, can help preserve the sport and make it as safe as any other sport.

    That's just my 2-cents worth :)
     
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  9. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka
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    JABF, I think the main thing is that the kid needs to love the sport, and has to have a penchent for wanting to hit or be hit. And for that the parents need to know their kids. A kid unafraid of hitting or being hit back is probably safer then a kid scared of them, and even if they don't mind it, if they don't love the sport they probably are not going to be as safe.
     
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  10. JustAnotherBearsFan99

    JustAnotherBearsFan99 Assistant Head Coach
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    I completely agree. And I also understand why a parent wouldn't want their son to play football. I respect them either way.

    This has been a GREAT thread because it helps focus on WHY the game we love needs to be made safer. We all (me too) love to see the "Big Hit" on a player. Many of us come unglued when a Bears player gets fined for a questionable hit. You read countless posts about how it's getting to be like flag football in the NFL now, and we condemn Roger Goodell for handing out big fines.

    But this thread gives us all some "food for thought" about the consequences of letting the game ruin lives. It certainly makes me re-think some things. Good thread Ric. Thanks for posting it.
     
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