Former NFL Players Glad For Concussion Attention

If somebody from the other team had the football — or better yet, was about to catch it — McCoy’s own cerebellum told him to drive his helmet right through the poor fellow.Now, McCoy can’t drive home, can’t trust himself behind the steering wheel. Just staying between the white lines got too difficult. The blur was in his head.

Mike McCoy played for the Green Bay Packers and is currently 55 years old.  McCoy learned of his dementia issues three years ago at age 52 and has caught the attention of a fellow NFL alum, Willie Buchanon;

“Once you get away from the game, you realize, those little nicks and hiccups become a little more dramatic.”

Far more dramatic in some than others. A product of Oceanside High and San Diego State who closed out his career with the Chargers, Buchanon has kept close tabs on McCoy since they played in the same Green Bay secondary, and he’s seen the steady decline in his friend’s mental state.

Buchanon has also been deeply involved in the concussion issue as a by-product of being on the California State Athletic Commission.  The sport of boxing is commissioned by most State Athletic Associations and in order to box/base in each state there are rules regarding safety and injury.  One such rule deals with being knocked out in boxing;

“A football player getting a concussion is the same thing as a boxer getting knocked out,” Buchanon said. “In boxing, you couldn’t get back into the ring to even spar for 30 days. In the NFL, in our day, we turned around and played the next week.”

Chris Jenkins of The San Diego Union-Tribute uses this article not only to highlight McCoy and Buchanon but to also explain what the Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy is about and what the current finding/feelings are.  Robert A. Stern of the CSTE was in San Diego a few weeks back making a presentation to former NFL’ers about the issues at hand;

“It was a revelation, a total eye-opener, very sobering,” said sportscaster Jim Laslavic, a former Chargers linebacker who also played for Detroit and Green Bay over his 10 NFL seasons. “It made me question my decision to play as long as I did.”

Read the entire article HERE.


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