Costas, while recording a podcast with Slate.com's "Hang Up and Listen" with Stefan Fatsis, Josh Levin and Mike Pesca Monday night, was asked by an audience member what he would tell parents who asked him for his advice on if they should let their child play football, The Washington Post reported.
The host of NBC's "Football Night in America," and co-host on NBC's coverage of the U.S. Open, Ryder Cup, Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes, said:
"I'd tell them no. I'd tell them no. I know that goes viral tomorrow. I might say, I might say -- and you know that I've known many many thoughtful people who have been involved in football their entire lives, coaches, players who belie the stereotype of what we've got or think we've got coming out of the Dolphins locker room, very thoughtful people where football has shaped their lives in a positive way, so I'm not going to paint everyone with a broad brush.
"Maybe the better answer is: Be advised of the extreme dangers, know what you're getting into. But let me put it this way: If it were my son, all right, and he was 13 years old and had reasonable athletic ability, I would encourage him to play baseball, or to play basketball or to play soccer or something other than football."
Costas has been a critic of American football's violence and celebration of violence, and in an earlier interview with The New York Times he called the game "unacceptably brutal," MSNBC reported.
The 61-year-old broadcaster, a 25-time Emmy Award winning journalist, has two adult children who also work in broadcasting.