Osi Umenyiora Retracts His “I’ll Be in A Wheelchair at 45″ Statement – He Isn’t Helping Things!
Just minutes ago while on the ESPN show Outside The Lines Osi was asked by Jeremy Schaap why keep playing if in fact he believed his football playing would ultimately lead him to being injured or in a wheelchair by the age of forty five.
When questioned Umenyiora took a different approach and responded by saying:
Obviously it was an exaggeration on my part, at least I hope so, I hope it was an exaggeration but there is no question it is a dangerous sport.
Concussions have become a front and center topic of debate in the sports world. Not only for football players but many other athletes who receive blows to the head. Even soccer players have been diagnosed with head trauma after heading soccer balls which come at them at high speeds.
Many NFL players have been very vocal about the potential serious effects of continuous blows or impacts to the head, especially after the recent and unfortunate death of Junior Seau. There is no doubt that players have been affected and veterans suffered from a lack of research in previous seasons and also a lack of knowledge.
I like Osi Umenyiora but statements such as the one's he made via Twitter do not help matters, it only confuses the situation especially for retired players currently fighting the National Football League. On one hand you have players who went on the field without having evidence nor actual scientific results of the potential dangers. These veteran players went out there without really understanding the risks or long term effects and without having a choice.
On the other hand you have today's players who have a better understanding of the risks involved and also have proof of the dangers by just looking at their retired peers. But many of these players who know the risks still choose to play the game! Osi Umenioyra admits he understands the risks but appreciates the lifestyle football provides him so he chooses to play.
This is setting up to ultimately become a huge battle in the courts and modern day players need to be careful how they word their statements. Eventually if they choose to play knowing the dangers then they will not have a legal case in the future and may hinder potential cases of retired players who have a legitimate case to bring upon the courts.
Osi Umenyiora doesn't know if he will be in a wheelchair by 45, he doesn't even really believe that but it was something to tweet on a subject which has become a trending topic. Athletes want to be so relevant that they tweet or say things which either make no sense or just make them look foolish. Osi Umenyiora is implying to today's youth that it is acceptable to take chances with your life and well being as long as you get paid no matter what the consequences may be to you or your loved ones.