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posted: 11/16/2012 5:29 AM

Throw a flag on excessive concussion talk

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  • San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith suffered a concussion on this tackle Sunday by St. Louis Rams linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar.

    San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith suffered a concussion on this tackle Sunday by St. Louis Rams linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar.
    Associated Press/The Sacramento Bee, Paul Kitagaki


I'm pre-concussed over the constant talk about concussions.

I can't watch a game without over-the-top talk about safety in the NFL.

I get it! But the media and announcers seem to think every time there is a call, we need to have the explanation that safety is a number one concern in the NFL.

Enough, OK?

Now there are former players with legitimate complaints about memory loss, yet there are also phonies just looking to cash in on the situation.

My mother-in-law had dementia and then Alzheimer's, and she never played a down of football. She worked for the phone company for more than 30 years and raised a family.

Football is a great game, and Sundays are special, but as I watch guys such as Mike Ditka, Tom Jackson, and countless others former players, I can't figure out why they haven't had any issues.

These guys must have gotten lucky, and the NFL and NFLPA are doing all they can to minimize the problem. But at some point, doesn't the personal responsibility of playing the game fall on the individual?

Yes it's a dangerous game, but if you can't remember what you had for dinner two nights ago, and you last played in league 35 years ago, can you say football was the cause?

It could be genes or aging. I know this -- I didn't play in the NFL, but I can tell you with almost 65% certainty I think I had meatloaf on Monday.

That's not good, maybe I ought to get a lawyer.

Tebow the cause of losing?

Rex Ryan, the coach of the New York Jets, is a buffoon.

It is totally mind blowing to me that the losers on the Jets team want to call Tim Tebow terrible. There are actually people out there that think it's acceptable to blame Tebow for the Jets' problems.

How can they? He's thrown only six passes, he hardly plays, and yet players on his team are sniping at him.

One question: if he's not any good, then why not play the backup quarterback Greg McElroy, who helped Alabama win a national championship? Is he terrible too?

Rex Ryan should never be a head coach in the league again. He's a Ryan -- great assistants, but there is always too much drama. They're OK when you're winning, but just too distracting, which leads to losing. There is no leadership -- that's for sure.


The other day I read where former athletes such as John Starks, Tiki Barber and World B. Free will charge fees to play hoops, or attend bar mitzvahs. I laughed at first, but then started thinking -- why not?

Look for my price list coming soon. If you need me for a baptism -- I'm your guy. How about a prison visit or lunch? I've got my calculator out -- this is going to be huge!

NFL picks:

Last week I went 2-0 and my season record is 13-10-1. This week I'll take Atlanta (-10) as they get back on track. Also, I'll take Oakland (+ 4) over New Orleans.

Program notes:

Watch for me again on Mancow Muller at 6 a.m. Monday on Ch. 50 (WPWR), and I'll be on the Bears pregame show on Ch. 26 (WCIU) on Monday night.

• Mike North's column appears each Tuesday and Friday in the Daily Herald, and his video commentary can be found Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at For more, visit

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