We asked former Chicago Bear, Dallas Cowboy and Bears and Saints Head Coach Mike Ditka his thoughts on the President’s comments. “I think everybody’s entitled to their own opinions on that. You could say ‘If I had a son I wouldn’t want him to drive a car either.’ You know, I’m not making light of the fact. Football is a contact sport. It’s a collision sport. People hit each other very hard. The bodies have gotten bigger, faster and probably stronger in a lot of ways. The equipment has become so sophisticated now that almost the helmet that was kinda for protection has become a weapon where you have no fear to strike with your head. That’s what has caused a lot of the problems. I understand the comment; a lot of parents are probably saying the same thing. If I have my ‘druthers, do I want my kid to hit a baseball or shoot a basketball or play football or kick a soccer ball. I mean you might pick one of the other options.”
We also had a chance to ask the same question of former Minnesota Vikings Wide Receiver Cris Carter. He was not quite as politically correct as Coach Ditka was. “Well, I’ve been watching politics lately. He is the President, the most powerful man in the free world, but what he knows about the National Football League, I think, is still limited, and I’d just be a little careful on trying to be an expert on everything. I played 16 years in the National Football League; did not have one concussion. What Obama doesn’t understand is football’s not a game about getting hit; it’s a game about NOT getting hit. That’s how you avoid it (a concussion), and that’s how you keep playing. It’s the most popular sport for a reason. You look at some of the other sports, I mean, the (injury) numbers are horrific; soccer, girls’ injuries. Do we have a dilemma? YES. Are we gonna get it better? ABSOLUTELY, but we have the best game going Obama, and I voted for you twice!”
There is no doubt the discussions about the dangers of the game will continue, but there is also no doubt the NFL IS the most beloved sport on the planet and it WILL remain so!