Originally written on Down and Distance  |  Last updated 11/12/14
Cleveland_browns_v_e17e

It seems that every month a new story comes out of a former NFL player showing signs of damage to the brain from numerous concussions and hard hits. Whether the story is Junior Seau’s suicide or Jamal Anderson suing the NFL, all of them are sad and provide evidence to the dangers of playing in the NFL.

This time, former Chargers and 49ers linebacker Steve Hendrickson is suffering from a number of cognitive problems that he relates directly to his playing career.

“I can remember material I had before the concussions,” Hendrickson told Howard Yune of NapaNews.com. “Twenty years ago seems so clear to me, but yesterday seems just —- far away, foggy.”

The short term memory loss is one of many problems for Hendrickson, who, because of the side effects from his playing career, has not been able to work for six years.

Hendrickson estimates that he suffered at least twenty concussions will playing football at the University of Cal and in the NFL. He said there were not a lot of questions about his condition during those years.

“They never even questioned you, and I never questioned it,” he said. “They’d tell me how I got [the concussions] but never said it was some bad thing or that I should sit out. And when you cover kickoffs like I did, you’ll get a few, especially with the helmets they had then.”

Hendrickson, whose career ended in 1995, said his problems began in his 30s, when his memory began to fail and he would go through “these states where I’d be comatose two or three days, unable to move.”

While the Social Security Administration accepted his disability claim in 2007 citing trauma-related brain damage, he’s been frustrated by the NFL’s pension plan, which designated him disabled by “non-football causes.”

Asked if his football career was worth it, Hendrickson said: “Living the life, it wasn’t a great life. You’re a piece of meat, there one day and gone the next. And it might cost you your brain.”

The NFL is a dangerous game. Hopefully the future brings more safety standards to not only lower the amount of concussions suffered by players but also cut down on the side effects from head injuries.

 

For more news:

Follow us on twitter: @DownAndDistance
Follow me on twitter: @BKrumm1

PLAYERS: Junior Seau
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Manny Pacquiao vs. Chris Algieri live blog!

Carson: Hall of Fame career not worth concussion problems

Tiger hires new swing coach

Is Sting making his WWE debut at Survivor Series?

Eric Decker: It's tough watching Emmanuel Sanders, Broncos

Semaje Perine breaks Melvin Gordon's rushing record

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Chip Kelly, Eagles GM not seeing eye-to-eye

Pete Carroll open to playing Richard Sherman at WR

Jay Gruden: RG3 has been 'coddled for so long'

Red Sox have best offer on table for Pablo Sandoval?

LeBron: Kevin Love will get the ball 'if he demands it'

76ers fans can get free tickets with a box of Mac & Cheese

Harvard kicker wears glasses

WATCH: Tennessee fans go a little overboard celebrating TD

Dwight Howard out indefinitely after having PRP on knee

Report: Mike Gundy pursuing Florida job

WATCH: Jameis Winston gets away with shoving an official

WATCH: Georgia's Chris Conley makes diving TD catch

WATCH: Nebraska blocks field goal, returns it for TD

Florida DL shows support for Will Muschamp with eye black

WATCH: Javale McGee kisses elderly fan sitting courtside

WATCH: Tim Tebow busts out a brief Steve Spurrier impression

WATCH: Nerlens Noel gets flagrant for foul on Eric Bledsoe

Video: Deron Williams destroys Jeremy Lamb with crossover

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Carson: Career not worth concussions

Report: Gundy pursuing Florida job

Tiger hires new swing coach

WATCH: Jameis Winston shoves ref

Florida DL supports Will Muschamp with eye black

Jay Gruden: RG3 has been 'coddled'

LeBron: Love needs to 'demand' the ball

Bills-Jets game will be free admission

Pete Carroll: Lynch is 'our guy'

Which NFL team will get the #1 pick?

Game of the week: Patriots vs. Lions

Report: Padres join hunt for Sandoval

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.