Former Jets and Patriots running back Curtis Martin, who is about to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, says he suffered “a lot” of concussions during his career and became “an expert at covering them up.”
While hundreds of former players are suing the NFL for concussion related injuries, Martin does not look to be one of those who will join in suing the league. Martin views the concussions as an unfortunate reality of such a long career and sees no reason to be bitter towards the NFL.
“This was just the mentality, it’s no fault of the NFL or anything, it’s just a part of the game,” Martin said today, via Jenny Vrentas of the Star Ledger. “When I would get hit, they knew that I popped up just like that, every time I get hit. . . . Any time that I didn’t pop up, my fullback knew to come pick me up because I was probably either dazed or knocked out.”
Furthermore, Martin does not believe the NFL will be able to change the culture when it comes to concussions because players do not like being told to sit out, even if it is for their own good.
“The NFL not only has to deal with the fact that the game is changing and there are these real-life concussions and problems with health in the NFL,” he said, “but at the same time, they have to try to do everything around a player’s pride, around a player’s selfish motives or goals or whatever it may be. That’s something it just seems impossible to do. . . . I don’t think there’s anything they can do to prevent it. What can you do?”