Calvin Johnson Says Concussions Happen as Frequently as ‘Every Other Play’ in the NFL

San Francisco 49ers v Detroit Lions

Former Lions star receiver Calvin Johnson sat down with ESPN to talk about his early surprise retirement and put it bluntly: He retired because he didn’t want to subject his body to the dangers of the game.

He spoke about a number of taboo subjects in the NFL, including the ease of getting painkillers from team doctors, stating, ““I guess my first half of my career before they really, you know, before they were like started looking over the whole industry, or the whole NFL, the doctors, the team doctors and trainers they were giving them out like candy, you know?” 

The 30-year-old star has undergone knee, ankle, and finger surgeries already, and said he retired so he could function in his life after football.

He said that he’s unable to estimate the number of concussions he’s suffered, but he knows it’s several. He said concussions are a constant in the game.

If not on every play, then they happen like every other, every third play, you know. With all the helmet contact, guys hitting the ground, heads hitting ground. It’s simply when your brain touches your skull from the movement or the inertia, man. It’s simple to get a concussion, you know. I don’t know how many I’ve had over my career, you know, but I’ve definitely had my fair share.”

Scary stuff.

Photo via Getty

Tags: Calvin Johnson, Interview, retirement,