Former Indiana QB & NFL WR Antwaan Randle El Expresses Regret About Football, Lasting Effects of the Game

Former Indiana QB & NFL WR Antwaan Randle El Expresses Regret About Football, Lasting Effects of the Game

(Photo by G. N. Lowrance/NFLPhotoLibrary)

(Photo by G. N. Lowrance/NFLPhotoLibrary)

Former IU Alum and NFL Wide Receiver Antwaan Randle El told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Tuesday that “if I could go back, I wouldn’t” in reference to the game of football…

Everyone remembers the glorious 43-yard pass to Hines Ward in 2006 at SuperBowl XL, where Former Pittsburgh Steelers WR Antwaan Randle El won his first and only championship in his 9 year career in the NFL.

(Photo: HoosierHuddle)

(Photo: HoosierHuddle)

He was one of the most versatile athletes in the game, transforming from a college quarterback to NFL wide receiver. Randle El spent his time in Bloomington, IN serving as Indiana University’s quarterback (1998-2001).

The news today about his recent struggle, physically, after leaving the game behind in 2010 is a cause for concern for athletes all over the world pursuing a career in football. The deepest concern lies in when he was asked if he could go back and do it again what he would change, “I would play baseball. I got drafted by the Cubs in the 14th round, but I didn’t play baseball because of my parents. They made me go to school. Don’t get me wrong, I love the game of football. But right now, I could still be playing baseball” He said.

Randle El expressed openly about how he is doing physically by saying that simple task such as walking up and down the stairs has become a struggle, “I have to come down sideways sometimes, depending on the day” he said. Randle El often expressing loss of memory too.

“I ask my wife things over and over again, and she’s like, ‘I just told you that,’ ” Randle El told Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Tuesday. “I’ll ask her three times the night before and get up in the morning and forget. Stuff like that. I try to chalk it up as I’m busy, I’m doing a lot, but I have to be on my knees praying about it, asking God to allow me to not have these issues and live a long life. I want to see my kids raised up. I want to see my grandkids.”

Since Antwaan Randle El has been away from the game, he has focused on giving back to the community and helping people that are less fortunate. Since retirement in 2010, he helped found Virginia Academy, a christian school in Ashburn, and through his El Foundation, helped 5 underprivileged children attend school with scholarships. He now serves as the athletic director at Virginia Academy.

He brings up a point finally that should stick with most, including the duration of football and the NFL as a whole.

“Right now, I wouldn’t be surprised if football isn’t around in 20, 25 years.”

The game is vastly changing and becoming more dangerous with each year. It will remain to be seen if the profitability of the sport will ever be outweighed by the dangers physically.

Written by Jordan Maly

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