Justin Pugh Wants the NFL to Tackle Its Taboo Topic: Mental Health

Discussion in 'Arizona Cardinals' started by Brian in Mesa, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. Brian in Mesa

    Brian in Mesa BIM™ Contributor

    Age:
    48
    Posts:
    57,651
    Likes Received:
    3,386
    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Location:
    The Dark Side
    Justin Pugh Wants the NFL to Tackle Its Taboo Topic: Mental Health

    https://www.insidehook.com/article/...al-health-problems-andrew-luck-rob-gronkowski

    This past August, Indianapolis Colts franchise quarterback Andrew Luck held back tears while he told a roomful of reporters that he hadn’t “been able to live the life I want to live” because of football and said the joy had been taken out of the game.

    Days later, Rob Gronkowski spoke publicly about the reasons he decided to retire from football in March for the first time. “I was not in a good place,” the three-time Super Bowl winner said. “Football was bringing me down and I didn’t like it. I was losing that joy in life. I really was.”

    The optics of two of NFL’s most recognizable stars, both only 30 years old, speaking out about the mental toll playing football was taking on their enjoyment of life was jarring.

    In a sport like football, players being forced to retire because of physical problems is commonplace, but mental issues causing players to voluntarily walk away from the game — and the millions of dollars they’d be paid to play it — is something new.

    Or is it?

    “If you start losing stars, then it becomes a conversation,” Arizona Cardinals guard Justin Pugh tells InsideHook. “How long have we been losing practice squad players? Guys that aren’t quarterbacks or aren’t Rob Gronkowski? You know what I mean? We haven’t made any changes when those guys leave because they’re not stars. All of a sudden, a couple of stars start admitting and saying things are happening to them, and now all of a sudden it’s a conversation. It’s something that I definitely wish would have been brought up way back when.”

    According to Pugh, a first-round pick out of Syracuse who’s playing his seventh season in the NFL, the mental health of NFL players is a topic that merits discussion both inside and outside of the locker room and has been ignored for far too long.

    “We need to have an open dialogue where guys don’t feel afraid to come forward and say, ‘Look, I’m having issues. I’m having anxiety. I’m depressed about this game. It’s taking … To take Rob Gronkowski’s word, it’s taking the joy out of the game for me,'” Pugh tells InsideHook. “That is the conversation that needs to happen. I don’t care how much money you throw at something. The stigma has to change and that’s what me talking about this with you is going to help do. Me talking about it to you, Rob Gronkowski talking about it. Those things are going to help change the stigma.”

    And, even though the NFL and NFLPA reached an agreement in May which requires every team to retain a behavioral health team clinician whose job is supporting players’ emotional and mental health and well-being., the stigma still persists.

    “Sometimes it’s former players that are like, ‘Oh, these new kids are soft’ and whatnot,” Pugh says. “To that I always say, ‘Former players are killing themselves right now.’ Literally putting holes in their chest rather than dealing with the issue of mental health. So when guys like make a joke or say this new generation is soft … I’d much rather be soft and deal with the issues at hand than keep them hidden and kill myself or overdose while trying to self-medicate.”

    Full article at the link:

    https://www.insidehook.com/article/...al-health-problems-andrew-luck-rob-gronkowski
     
  2. cardsfanmd

    cardsfanmd Registered

    Posts:
    12,307
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2007
    Location:
    annapolis, md
    If only Justin Pugh was half as interested in playing football as he is in talking about it...
     
    juza76 likes this.
  3. Chris_Sanders

    Chris_Sanders Super Moderator Contributor

    Age:
    47
    Posts:
    24,653
    Likes Received:
    4,145
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2002
    Location:
    Scottsdale, Az
    Seau :(

    He has a definite point
     
  4. dreamcastrocks

    dreamcastrocks Chopped Liver Moderator Contributor

    Age:
    40
    Posts:
    38,214
    Likes Received:
    657
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Shocked they didn't mention Seau in the article.
     
  5. NittanyCard

    NittanyCard Registered

    Age:
    29
    Posts:
    213
    Likes Received:
    195
    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2018
    Location:
    Paradise Valley
    Who says he isn't?

    Clearly says he was depressed from having trouble early in his career and had to seek help. Plenty players every year suffer from thinking their childhood dream is over and other issues.

    Probably should just pop some pills with some whisky and shut up and block though.
     

Share This Page