Former NFL quarterback Brett Favre told Sports Illustrated's Greg Bishop that he has concerns about the long-term effects of head injuries he sustained during his career, saying “it really is scary.”
Favre is on the cover of this week's SI, the annual "Where Are They Now?" issue.
Favre was asked about what he thinks when he seems some of the things that former quarterback Jim McMahon has gone through since retiring. McMahon has said he played through five concussions during his career and now often walks around “in a daze.”
“I never thought I’d see Jim McMahon like that,” said Favre. “He was invincible.”
McMahon was part of a class-action lawsuit filed against the NFL by several ex-players in 2011, which reached a settlement earlier this year. He was also part of a lawsuit that alleged the league routinely and illegally gave them dangerous painkillers, but the lawsuit was dismissed by a judge last December.
More from Favre:
“It really is scary. First of all, for the legitimate cases out there, and Jimmy Mac may be one of them, the lesson there if you didn't know it already is that no one's invincible,” Favre said. “Things do catch up with you. There is a price to be paid. What that will be is yet to be seen. It may be from one violent hit. I don’t know, but it’s scary. Because you wonder, you can’t help but wonder, what is that going to do to me? Or am I going to be one of the lucky ones? Whatever lucky is. I’m not knocking the NFL. I knew what I signed up for ... I could have got out whenever I wanted to get out.”
Asked how often he worries about the cumulative hits he took over his career or how many games he played in, Favre said he tries not to think about it.
“It's there but it's not there. I'm just going to put it away,” he said. “If you have to walk with a little bit of a limp, you can't put it away. If you like to throw with your kid but you can't sling your arm back, then so be it. But if you can't remember how to get back to your house or where you live, that's a whole different element.”
- Molly Geary