Recently-retired Lions receiver Calvin Johnson says the effects of his career make it difficult to walk when he wakes up in the morning.
In an interview with ESPN’s E:60 set to air on Thursday, Johnson discussed his decision to retire, dealing with concussions and was candid about the pain and rigor of playing in the NFL.
“It’s clear to see when you get a concussion,” Johnson said. “In football, it’s – concussions happen, if not on every play, then they happen like every other, every third play, you know. With all the helmet contact, guys hittin’ the ground, heads hittin’ ground. It’s simply when your brain touches your skull from the movement or the inertia, man. It’s simple to get a concussion, you know. … I don’t know how many I’ve had over my career, you know, but I’ve definitely had my fair share.”
Johnson discussed the function of team injury personnel, admitted it would have been harder to retire had Detroit been in playoff position, and also said it’s difficult to move when he wakes up every morning, as a byproduct of the wear and tear.
“When you wake up in the morning, you can’t walk,” he said. “You know, you’re shufflin’ across the floor. … I gotta go through, like, a little routine when I wake up in the morning to get everything functioning and ready to go. But, the only thing is everything just goes back to gridlock so fast once I sit down, ’cause you know you go to work again.”