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If We Love Richard Sherman, We Should Stop Watching Football…

If we love Richard Sherman, we should stop watching football.

You may block me after reading this, but please hear me out.

This picture hangs in my home when you first walk in the front door.

I love the violence of football. So do many of you. We celebrate THE LEGION OF BOOM. For many of these players it becomes THE LEGION OF DOOM.

I worked for the Oakland Raiders as a sideline reporter in 1997. Richard’s story is not new. Seven young men on that roster are dead. Most of them died horrible deaths. Google Curtis Whitley and Darrell Russell when you have a minute.

When I worked for the Dallas Cowboys in 2000, I saw the same thing. Young players making horrible decisions and dying way too young. I then covered a young player by the name of Ryan Leaf. You may have heard of him.

Football hits not only cause Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) in some players, they also break the frontal lobes of the brain. Frontal lobes are the breaking system of that big brain we humans have. It separates us from all other creatures. Animals don’t have them.

Brain damage turns those lobes off, and heavy drug use and drinking exacerbates it. If you drank 2/5’s of vodka on a Tuesday night, you’d be dead. In my hey day of drinking a half of a fifth would wipe me out.

If Richard could drink that much and function, he has been drinking that much for a long time. Don’t feel sorry for him. He almost killed many people. He almost killed himself. Nobody is coming to save him. He will have to save himself.

I’m wired just like Richard. What helped me was tough love. Very tough love. Stop blaming the 911 operator or the cops. He already was warned when previous court documents were sealed.

So back to the Legion. Earl is eternally angry, Brandon is in prison for trying to murder his fiance, and Richard just had a very bad night.

Addicts like Richard and I don’t need your pity, but we do need your prayers. I have heard no one express concern for Richard’s relatives, the police who responded, the K-9 released, or the 911 operator who was doing her job.

That alcohol helps sooth that frontal lobe that hurts like a bitch at times. I know from personal experience. I don’t want to see Richard die in the same way Curtis and Russell did. They were both my friends.

It is time for #25 to get to work. It will be much harder than anything he has ever done on a Sunday afternoon.

I am cheering for him.

I am here for him.

Not to coddle but to encourage.

Love and respect,

Don

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