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The Boston Globe

Opinion

DERRICK Z. JACKSON

Ringing the bell about NFL concussions

It IS SHOCKING to hear player after player talk on film to Dorsey Levens, former Green Bay Packers running back turned movie maker, about the number of concussions they had while playing pro football, and the subsequent headaches, mood swings, loss of memory, and fear that they were losing their minds. What is striking is that the players were not from the distant past of grainy black-and-white NFL films. They are in their 30s and 40s.

Many of them, with the exception of former star running back Jamal Lewis, were never household names in the National Football League. But one is still playing this season, defensive lineman Vonnie Holliday of the Arizona Cardinals. In his 15th season, Holliday, 36, told Levens, “Hell, if I’d known, I probably would’ve worked a little harder pitching that damn baseball, working on my my fastball, my curveball, and that changeup.”

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