FanDuel - WFBC

December 18, 2009

Former NFL star Dave Pear is sorry he ever played football: I wish I never played football. I wish that more than anything. Every single day, I want to take back those years of my life ...

posted by justgary to football at 07:17 PM - 6 comments

Kindof the opposite of what you hear from most of these guys, though. I've mentioned it before but years ago there was this documentary where they were talking to several former football players and discussing their lives well after their careers were over. The documentary was very sad as you see these guys who can't walk, takes them 30 minutes to get out of bed..one guy had to ice his back down hours each day, and I remember one part in particular where he's on his knees with his backbrace/icepack on playing with his son and his son runs into him to tackle him and you just see this look of extreme pain on his face..I mean the guy couldn't even enjoy playing with his kid. It was really sad.

But when the documentary asked "if you had it to do over again..." and it wasn't almost without hesitation the guys all said "of course, I would do it again. I loved the game."

(BTW - if anybody has the name/info on that particular documentary please let me know..I'd love to watch it again...it's been probably 15-20 years and I can't remember any other details about it).

posted by bdaddy at 08:54 PM on December 18

I read this earlier today and I'm glad it got posted here.

I love football a ton, but never played the game myself, and every day that goes by I become more troubled by seeing the price that so many guys have paid to play the sport they loved, and the response of the league to their plight. It seems like a story like this one appears almost daily.

The league has got to start doing right by its retired vets at some point soon. The condition of retired players is only going to get worse because of the increased athleticism and ferocity of the hitting.

The prevailing football culture perpetually treats players as disposable commodities, and the lack of support for retired players is the final chapter of that book.

I want to break the TV every time I see a player wearing a "GU" sticker in Gene Upshaw's memory.

The way the VA underserves, neglects, and tries to deny resources to armed services veterans while mismanaging or attempting to discredit their disability claims has boiled my blood for years, but in some ways, the NFL's record of taking care of its own is even worse.

If the league doesn't feel any obligation to address the long term needs of the players, than at the very least, there should have been some sort of league-mandated structuring of player compensation packages to include mandatory escrows, fund contributions, and individual insurance plans a long time ago. So that a portion of a player's income would be set aside and invested for his perpetual benefit. The players can't depend on agents and managers to craft beneficial schemes that include that kind of financial planning.

posted by beaverboard at 09:07 PM on December 18

To bdaddy: It was about Jim Otto number 00 center for the Oakland Raiders. I do not remember the name of the documentary but maybe knowing who it was will help you find it.

posted by ic23b at 09:54 PM on December 18

If anybody has the name/info on that particular documentary please let me know..I'd love to watch it again...it's been probably 15-20 years and I can't remember any other details about it

It was probably Disposable Heroes.

posted by justgary at 10:00 PM on December 18

The title of the book is "The Pain Of Glory" and it is the Jim Otto story. Enjoy the read. I did. Sorry I don't know thw title of the documentary.

posted by wildbill1 at 06:53 AM on December 19

I love football a ton, but never played the game myself, and every day that goes by I become more troubled by seeing the price that so many guys have paid to play the sport they loved, and the response of the league to their plight. It seems like a story like this one appears almost daily.

...and probably nothing will really change unless and until there is an effective fan boycott. That means us.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:03 AM on December 19

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