NEW YORK, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- During an interview with CBS "Sunday Morning" that will air on Super Bowl Sunday, former New York Jets quarterback Joe Namath said that the numerous hits to the head that he took during his playing career have severely affected his long-term health.
“I’ve been [through some] things medically,” he said. “I’ve seen some things on my brain. But I’ve had some treatment -- and improved.”
“Broadway Joe” is famous for guaranteeing victory before the Jets won the Super Bowl in 1969 over the heavily-favored Baltimore Colts. "Oh, you try to be cool," Namath said about his prediction. "You try to convince yourself, you know, 'all right, this is another game,' and, you know, 'I'm ready.'"
The Hall-of-Fame quarterback suffers from problems that other former players are afflicted with, such as memory loss, dementia and chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
“None of the body was designed to play football,” Namath said. “Excuse me, you know, football, we’re just not designed for.”
A $765 million settlement that the NFL reached with more than 4,500 former players who sued the league was recently ruled to be inadequate by U.S. District Judge Anita Brody.
“I am primarily concerned that not all retired NFL football players who ultimately receive a qualifying diagnosis or their [families] … will be paid,” Brody wrote in the decision. “Even if only 10 percent of retired NFL football players eventually receive a qualifying diagnosis, it is difficult to see how the Monetary Award Fund would have the funds available over its lifespan to pay all claimants at these significant award levels.”
[New York Post] [New York Daily News]