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Cris Carter: “I can’t blame the NFL for every issue that every former player has”


During the first installment in a five-part series of ESPN’s Outside The Lines, former NFL receiver Cris Carter made a point that will continue to echo through the months and years in which the concussion litigation unfolds.

“I can’t blame the NFL for every issue that every former player in the NFL has,” Carter said.

That’s the challenge, ultimately. If liability exists for concealing evidence regarding concussion risks or failing to take steps to protect players, it’s important that only those players whose circumstances trace to injuries associated with that liability share in the settlement or verdict.

It’s highly unlikely that Carter will ever join the growing throng of concussions plaintiffs. He says he may have had one concussion, and that, for the most part, “I was trying to avoid contact.”

Carter also repeated something that applies to former and current players: “I signed up to be in the NFL. It wasn’t like someone had to force me. I kinda knew what I was signing up for.”

And he tried to sign up for it even before he was old enough to do it.

“I doctored up my birth certificate when I was seven years old. They told me to come back in a year,” Carter said. “I was born to play the game. A lot of us were born to play the game. Make the game safer, because there’s a lot of other kids who are born to play the game, also.”

I probably have agreed with Carter as many times as Carter has had concussions, but I agree with everything he said today. If you do, or if you don’t, sound off in the comments.