Posts Tagged ‘Kurt Warner’

NFL San Diego Chargers Star May Have Suffered Brain Damage Related to Suicide

NFL San Diego Chargers Star May Have Suffered Brain Damage Related to Suicide

The family of Junior Seau, the NFL football star who died last week, is now reconsidering donating his brain to science, backing off their decision last week to let his brain be examined for signs of traumatic injury.

“The Seau family is currently revisiting several important family decisions and placing them on hold in order to confer with their elders,” said Pastor Shawn Mitchell, the longtime San Diego Chargers’ chaplain, in a statement. The Seaus are of Samoan descent, and elders are the most respected and highly regarded in a Samoan family. They are often consulted when making family decisions. It is unclear when the family now plans to make its final decision regarding the brain donation.

Seau, 43, who played for the Chargers as well as the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots, was found dead last Wednesday at his home in Oceanside, Calif., apparently from a self inflicted gunshot wound. Medical examiners ruled his death a suicide.

On Thursday evening, the family said they hoped that the brain donation would help others “down the road.”

Seau’s death has sent shock waves through the sports and science worlds, but experts have cautioned that it is too early to determine whether Seau’s suicide was linked to potential concussions he likely experienced during his 20 year NFL career.

On Thursday, former quarterback Kurt Warner said on “The Dan Patrick Show” that he’d prefer his children not to play football because of the risks that have been associated with it in recent years. He backtracked Friday after Amani Toomer, a retired NFL player who appears regularly on NBC SportsTalk, called Warner “a little disingenuous” for his comments.

“I think Kurt Warner needs to keep his opinions to himself when it comes to this. Everything that he’s gotten in his life has come from playing football,” said Toomer Thursday on SportsTalk. Toomer said he would “definitely” let his own children play football.

Warner responded to the comments on ESPN Radio’s “Hill and Schlereth” show Friday. While he said he is grateful for all that football has brought him, “At the end of the day, you know, I’ve seen how my wife looks at this game when I’m out there getting hit.”

“And it’s different when you put on a parent’s hat,” Warner said. “And, yeah, I want my kids to play and I want them to be healthy and I’d love them to have a great, long career, whether that’s collegiate, whether that’s professionalBut as a parent, I can’t avoid the fact that it’s a dangerous sport, and it’s a violent sport.”

Jacopo Annese, director of the University of California at San Diego’s Brain Observatory, said there has not been a definitive link shown between blows to the head and such disorders as depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s, but he did say there is strong scientific and anecdotal evidence.

“However ghoulish it may appear to the majority of the public, the work that is conducted postmortem is essential to validate this hypothesis, because the important clues are at the cellular level and we can’t see these with MRI, but we can with our microscopes,” said Annese.

While research methodology has not changed dramatically, the questions have evolved, offering clues into the potential lifetime adverse effects of hits and concussions.

What NFL single game record did Kurt Warner break in the game between the Cardinals and Jaguars

What NFL single game record did Kurt Warner break in the game between the Cardinals and Jaguars

Kurt Warner broke the NFL record for completion percentage for a single game, connecting on 24 of 26 passes for 243 yards and 2 TDs as the Arizona Cardinals dominated the Jacksonville Jaguars en route to a 31 17 road drubbing on Sunday. Arizona played nearly flawless football for three quarters, building a 31 3 lead the Jaguars could only begin to overcome in garbage time.

Coming off of a Week 1 game that saw the Offense completely out of sync, the Warner led Cardinals responded by putting together a balanced attack that was effective across the board. Tim Hightower had 72 yards on 15 carries and a TD, and Beanie Wells flashed his immense potential by gaining 44 on only 7 carries. If it weren’t for Wells fumbling the ball twice, he may have had many more chances.

It helped that in this game Steve Breaston was able to come back from injury, leading the team in receiving yards with 83 on 5 catches, while an almost fully healthy Anquan Boldin led the team in receptions with 8 for 69 yards. Larry Fitzgerald chipped in 4 for 34 and a TD.

The Defense added to its strong Week 1 performance by playing even better. The team harassed Jaguars QB David Garrard all day, collecting four more sacks on the year, and added two pass deflections, two fumble recoveries and an interception. The play of the day came when Calais Campbell used his 68 frame to block a field goal attempt which sent the ball skyward, only to end up in the hands of Antrel Rolle who weaved his way for an 83 yard touchdown.

With the impressive victory, the Cardinals answered many burning questions, and even exorcised some demons in the process: They can engineer a juggernaut playoff caliber Offense without Todd Haley calling plays, they can put up solid back to back Defensive efforts at least two games in a row, they can win on the road on the East Coast even if it is an early game, and the Super Bowl hangover, at least for them, is a myth.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. With a huge lead, an NFL record and a sore right shoulder, Kurt Warner(notes) headed to the bench late in the third quarter against Jacksonville.

He never expected he might have to re enter the game.

Warner completed his first 15 passes and broke the NFL’s single game record for completion percentage, and the Arizona Cardinals dominated the Jaguars in a 31 17 victory Sunday.

“Kurt’s found the fountain of youth somewhere,” teammate Larry Fitzgerald(notes) said. “I don’t know where it is, but we’re blessed to have his services. He played error free football to put our offence in a great position. When he’s back there in that kind of rhythm, it’s hard to deal with him.”

Jacksonville trailed 24 3 after two quarters the largest halftime deficit at home in team history and was down 28 points before mounting a mild comeback.

The only good news for the Jaguars (0 2)? Hardly anyone in Jacksonville saw it. The game was blacked out on local television, and the stands were half full.

They missed Warner put on quite a show for Arizona (1 1). He was 24 of 26 passing for 243 yards, with two touchdowns, no turnovers and no sacks. He was much sharper than he was last week, when he threw two interceptions and was sacked three times.

“It was nice the way I played last week to come back and have this kind of game,” Warner said.

Warner tied Jake Plummer’s(notes) franchise record by opening the game with 15 consecutive completions. By completing 92.3 per cent of his passes, he broke the previous NFL record set by Vinny Testaverde(notes) in 1993. Testaverde, playing for Cleveland, completed 21 of 23 passes against the Los Angeles Rams.

“We didn’t let nothing go over the top,” Jaguars cornerback Rashean Mathis(notes) said. “If he would hit 20 balls deep, then that’s something we don’t want to be a part of. But we wanted him to check the ball down. We just have to tackle better.”

Warner hooked up with Jason Wright(notes) for five yard score late in first half, then found Larry Fitzgerald for a 22 yarder to make it 31 3 late in the third.

Not wanting to risk injury, coach Ken Whisenhunt replaced Warner with former first round draft pick Matt Leinart(notes). But Leinart struggled, and Jacksonville rallied.

David Garrard(notes) found Marcedes Lewis(notes) for a touchdown on third and long, then hooked up with Mike Sims Walker(notes) for a score on a fourth down play that made it 31 17.

With the Jaguars driving, Warner started getting ready. But Garrard’s fourth down pass into the end zone bounced off Nate Hughes'(notes) shoulder pads.

“I just missed it,” Hughes said, holding back tears. “I saw it. I just missed it. I can’t even explain it. Very disappointed. I was pretty much hoping to get another chance the next drive, just get another shot.”

The Cards finally celebrated after Dominique Rodgers Cromartie(notes) intercepted Garrard’s pass with 2:25 to play.

“Obviously, we weren’t making the plays necessary to continue drives,” Garrard said. “We can’t keep shooting ourselves in the foot. We were the ones pretty much stopping ourselves.”

Jacksonville’s biggest problem might have been a questionable non call. Officials didn’t whistle pass interference on Adrian Wilson(notes) in the second quarter. Wilson hit Torry Holt(notes) just before Garrard’s third down pass got there, but no flags were thrown.

So instead of Jacksonville getting a first down, Josh Scobee(notes) lined up for a 46 yard field goal attempt that would have cut the deficit to 10 6. Calais Campbell(notes) blocked the kick, and Antrel Rolle(notes) scooped up the loose ball and returned it 83 yards for a touchdown and a 17 3 lead.

“Once I had the ball in my hands, I knew I could take it the distance,” Rolle said.

It wasn’t all good for Rolle. He had one of nine fumbles in a sloppy game. Arizona had five of them all in the first half.

Maybe it was the heat and humidity or just East Coast jitters. After all, the Cards went 0 5 on the East Coast in the 2008 regular season.

“This was a good win for us, especially a one o’clock game on the East Coast, which is something that hasn’t been done in a long time,” Whisenhunt said. “I know there were a lot of crazy plays, but I like the way our team responded on both sides of the ball.”

Warner barely got touched, and the one time he did, the play was negated because of an offsides penalty.