Thursday, September 21, 2017

Aaron Hernandez' CTE diagnosis 'devastating' news for NFL

From Yahoo News (Sept. 21, 2017):

"Based on his violent outbursts, mood swings and self-medicating ways, it comes as little surprise that Aaron Hernandez suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), as his lawyer alleges in a new lawsuit against the NFL and the New England Patriots.

The degenerative brain disease has been most commonly found in football players, soldiers and others who have suffered from repeated concussions.

“Aaron had Stage III CTE usually seen in players with a median age of death of 67 years,” reads a lawsuit attorney, Jose Baez, filed in the name of Hernandez’s daughter, Avielle.

Learn more about concussions, CTE, and football.

It may explain, yet hardly excuse, Hernandez of murdering Odin Lloyd in 2013 or being charged for the 2012 slaying of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado. He beat the double murder because while there was no disputing he was in the car the night of the drive-by shooting, prosecutors couldn’t conclusively prove he was the triggerman. It may also provide insight into his prison suicide last spring while serving a life sentence for the Lloyd killing.

Based on his age, however, a CTE diagnosis this significant comes as not just a surprise, but a chilling moment for a sport that is trying everything to both make the game safer and convince young athletes, and their parents, that it is worth playing.

Sixty-seven years old? Advanced stages? That is the opinion of researchers at Boston University, who have been the leaders on CTE research.

Hernandez played just three seasons in the NFL, 44 games total for the Patriots, before being arrested at the age of 23 for the Lloyd murder. He was 27 when he took his life...."

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