Article Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

Former NFL player so moved by ‘Concussion’ he was brought to tears


Dec. 8, 2015 CBS Sports

Concussion, the upcoming film starring Will Smith as Dr. Bennet Omalu — the doctor who discovered chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and recently wrote an op-ed for theNew York Times in which he urged parents to not let their children play football — is set to hit theaters nationwide in just over two weeks. In advance of that release date, Emily Kaplan of Sports Illustrated’s The MMQB screened the film with 70 former NFL players.

Reactions from those players were all very similar — their eyes were opened to a lot of information they were not necessarily aware of during their playing days, and if they received that information while they were playing, it might have changed the way they did their jobs.

One of the players — former Buccaneers, Oilers, and Cardinals linebacker Keith McCants, who was the No. 4 pick in the 1990 NFL Draft — was so moved by the film that he was brought to tears. “I know we were paid to hurt people,” McCants said, per The MMQB. “We were paid to give concussions. If we knew that we were killing people, I would have never put on the jersey.”

Willie Gault, who played receiver for wide receiver for the Bears and Raiders for 10 years, had a similar reaction. “Every single football player in this country — NFL, college, high school, youth — needs to see this movie,” Gault said. “If I had seen it while I was a player, I think I still would have played football, but I would have played it differently. I would have had a different mindset.”

Neither of those were even the most striking reaction to the film, though. That came from Terry Bolar, who played three seasons for the Jets and Chargers from 1981 through 1983. “When you watch that movie,” Bolar said, “you see how much the NFL resembles tobacco companies.”

Read More on CBS Sports

Gene Upshaw Player Assistance Trust Fund

Apply Today

All Resources

Tell Me More

1 in 4 Americans have no retirement savings

And those who do aren’t saving enough

Read More

10 Reasons Why Men and Women Avoid Emotional Intimacy

Building connection in your relationship can take time and effort.

Read More

30 Small, Nice Ways to Stay Connected to Your Partner

The more connected you feel to your partner, the better you'll both be.

Read More

How to Not Let Anger Get the Best of You

Know how anger is triggered and tactics to cooling down.

Read More

Black people in rural areas continue to experience health disparities

Comparisons come from rates in diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke.

Read More

Creative Strategies from Single Parents on Juggling Work and Family

Flexible work schedules and strong support networks go a long way.

Read More

Key Insights From 2021's World Happiness Report

Three must-know insights from this year’s World Happiness Report.

Read More

The Science of Changing Someone's Mind

How to reason with unreasonable people.

Read More