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Brett Favre, citing CTE risk, says kids shouldn't play tackle football until they are 14

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Pro Football Hall of Famer Brett Favre was known as the ultimate ironman in the NFL, having a streak of 297 consecutive starts over his career.

Now, Favre is warning parents about the dangers of playing football.

Favre, appearing in a new public service announcement, urges parents not to let children under 14 play tackle football, saying it would dramatically reduce the risk of being diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE.

CTE currently can only be diagnosed post-mortem.

“Having kids play before high school is just not worth the risk,” Favre said in a statement. “CTE is a terrible disease, and we need to do everything we can to prevent it for the next generation of football players.”

Favre is partnering with the Concussion Legacy Foundation to “support athletes, veterans, and all affected by concussions and CTE; achieve smarter sports and safer athletes through education and innovation; and to end CTE through prevention and research.”

Brett Favre shows off his Pro Football Hall of Fame ring after receiving it during a 2016 game at Lambeau Field.
Brett Favre shows off his Pro Football Hall of Fame ring after receiving it during a 2016 game at Lambeau Field.

"I don't know what normal feels like. Do I have CTE? I really don't know," Favre said on NBC's "Today" on Tuesday. “Concussions are a very, very serious thing, and we're just scraping the surface of how severe they are.”

“[There is] no telling how many concussions I've had, and what are the repercussions of that, there's no answer,” Favre added.

Comparing tackle football to flag football, a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said those who participate in tackle football are 15 times more likely to suffer a head injury in a game or practice.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Brett Favre, citing CTE, says no tackle football for kids under 14