A week before the Super Bowl captures the attention of what's expected to be a record worldwide audience, President Barack Obama expressed concerns about the dangers of playing football.
In an interview with The New Republic magazine, the president admitted to being a big football fan, but said if he had a son he would "have to think long and hard before I let him play football."
Obama was asked if he enjoys the game any differently "knowing the impact that the game takes on its players."
"I think that those of us who love the sport are going to have to wrestle with the fact that it will probably change gradually to try to reduce some of the violence," Obama told the magazine.
"In some cases, that may make it a little bit less exciting, but it will be a whole lot better for the players, and those of us who are fans maybe won't have to examine our consciences quite as much," the president added.
He also indicated he was more worried about college players than NFL players because the professional players have a union to protect their interests and most of those players are well-compensated for the violence they do to their bodies.
Head injuries related to playing football have been at the forefront recently and just last week, researchers found CTE -- chronic traumatic encephalopathy -- in brain scans of some living NFL players.
CTE is a brain disease that has been linked to head trauma that can lead to depression.
CTE was discovered in the brain of former NFL star Junior Seau, who committed suicide in May. Seau's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the NFL last week. Seau's family says the linebacker's suicide was the result of CTE caused by violent hits he suffered during his career.