Deion Sanders doubts NFL’s concussion problem, says former players are looking for payday

Kevin Kaduk
Shutdown Corner

It's no secret that Deion Sanders is arguably the worst broadcaster on television pulling a check these days. Pick any five minutes of his NFL Network appearances and you're likely to find five minutes of inane and uniformed bloviating that brings nothing to the table.

What Sanders said during Sunday's pregame show, however, may have proven to be Prime Time's low point. Despite player safety being the league's No. 1 talking point for much of the last year, Sanders scoffed at the suggestion that the NFL has a concussion problem and blamed former players for trying to capitalize off the issue.

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Worse yet, he later took to Twitter to question whether brain trauma played any role in Junior Seau's suicide last year. As Deadspin notes, it would appear that Sanders has morphed into some sort of concussion "truther."

"The game is a safe game, the equipment is better," Sanders said on the NFL Network set. "I don't buy all these guys coming back with these concussions. I'm not buying all that. Half these guys are trying to make money off the deal. That's real talk. That's really how it is. I wish they'd be honest and tell the truth because it's keeping kids away from our game."

As for Seau's suicide, here's what he said to a Twitter follower who questioned Sanders' ill-advised take on concussions and brain trauma. (Sanders has since removed the tweet.)

Remember that doctors have already linked Seau to chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a neurodegenerative condition that can lead to memory loss, dementia and depression. Are we supposed to believe science or Sanders? It's not a hard choice.

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Sanders is lucky that he's not suffering from any major post-career medical issues (he never tackled anyone hard enough to do any damage, as some have snarked.) He's also likely among the top 1 percent when it comes to career earnings so he doesn't have to worry about money like some former players who were dumped because of injury and disability.

Considering both of those factors, you can see why Sanders might remain ignorant to the health problems that plague many former players and worry others like Rodney Harrison, who says he's "scared to death" about what's to come.

It's a shame, though, that he's being airing such ignorance on a topic that's very important to many of his former teammates. On the league's cable network, no less.

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