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Chilling story by Jackie Mac on Ted Johnson

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by bobgeorge, Feb 2, 2007.

  1. bobgeorge

    bobgeorge Moderator

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  2. chunkypony

    chunkypony Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    wow, that is awful. Really sad. I really liked Ted, and it makes me sad to hear how bad he has become.

    This relates a lot to my paper. Who knows, if Johnson had been wearing a Riddell Revolution helmet, we may not be having this conversation.
     
  3. patsox23

    patsox23 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    holy cow. quite an article. fascinating.
     
  4. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Wow.

    For God's sake, given what Johnson's been through, throwing him under the bus like this is just uncalled for. I hope whoever said this gets reamed a new one.
     
  5. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Certainly a sad story. But a couple of things don't add up :

    - Just a couple of months ago, Johnson hinted that he would consider playing again.

    - He's blaming Belichick so much for that incident in training camp of 2002 - and then played 3 more season (including 2002). If he was so upset at getting the "blue jersey", maybe he shouldn't have played three more years.

    I'm not trying to pick on the guy but he seems so intent on blaming Belichick when Johnson could have retired any time he liked.
     
  6. Seymour93

    Seymour93 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    The Globe is back to its old ways. That's a fantastic article, but the subject is awful. That piece completely changes my perception of TJ. I thought he was selfish for quitting, now with all the facts on the table he nobly retired to save a few years of his life. You can completely understand why he seemed bitter the past few years in his media appearances. BB isn't to blame though. Who's to tell if someone is taking it easy in practice or legitimately struggling like TJ was? The coach is obligated to test any player. Obviously it was serious and BB clearly regrets his handling of the situation. Nobody is at fault here. Well actually if you want to criticize someone it should be the NFL front office in NY. The league doesn't protect their players when they gracefully bow out. There's movement for change, let's hope something becomes of it.
     
  7. BelichickFan

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    Reading that article, it's Belichick who's getting thrown under the bus.
     
  8. NEPat

    NEPat Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    This is why I hate when people get on players for missing a lot of practices and games for injury reasons. These are their bodies, their careers, and sometimes their lives that these guys put on the line. I really dislike the 'soft' label that players get branded with because they look out for themselves. And I'm sure it's also a locker room reputation that players get, if they sit out for injury reasons, and their teammates are playing through pain, it looks like they aren't doing enough for the team.

    It's so depressing to read this.
     
  9. Mike the Brit

    Mike the Brit Minuteman Target PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Thanks for pointing to this, Bob. Yes, you're quite right. It raises many, many issues. I think that it shows the Patriots (and BB in particular) in a bad and a good light.

    If the Patriots were no worse than other NFL teams might have been, they were certainly no better. Pushing an athlete who has a brain injury back on the field against doctor's advice (if that's what really happened) is a very bad thing to do.

    On the other hand, I admire BB for his honesty in admitting his mistake. It's notable that the "we never talk about injuries" thing wasn't used to block out this story. Rightly so. What's more, it's clear that Robert Kraft has been a caring and supportive employer.

    It also confirms my contempt for the NFLPA, who do nothing to protect their members where it really matters: by pushing for stringent controls on health and the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

    Finally, though I'm not a doctor, I know more than I would like to about brain injury and there is hope. The brain can recover a lot in the right circumstances. It takes a very long time and what one needs are not drugs but a stress-free environment, a healthy diet, moderate exercise, no alcohol and a lot of sleep. He should go and live by a beach somewhere for a few years.
     
  10. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress In the Starting Line-Up

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    After Junior Seau was injured vs. Chicago, Ted Johnson stated on Mike Felger's radio show that if BB called him, not only was he willing to suit up and play this season for the Patriots, he was eager to do so. He did not sound like a man who regretted his past career or condemned his previous employer. In fact he was begging to turn back the clock.

    Only two months later Johnson blames his former coach for his mental, physical and emotional break-down.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2007
  11. NEPat

    NEPat Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    I don't see that at all. The article provided Ted's side of the story, and had comments from Belichick in response to tell his. It seems like a fair article to me.
     
  12. DaBruinz

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    I feel sorry for Ted Johnson. But, I also feel disdain.

    He blames Belichick for all of the problems he's currently facing.

    His amphetamine addiction.
    His memory loss.
    His emotional issues.

    1) While Belichick may have "prodded" Johnson back on the field, Johnson had the right, at any time, to just say NO.

    2) Johnson kept his concussions a secret and did not seek help at the time they occurred. Which also explains how BB and Pioli were unprepared for Ted Johnson's sudden retirement prior to the start of training camp in 2005.

    3) Bill Belichick didn't tie Johnson down and shove amphetamines down the guy's throat day in and day out. And its as likely that the amphetamines are as much a cause for the memory loss and emotional issues as Johnson's concussions were.

    I give Johnson credit, he DID take responsibility for his not telling about 5 of his concussions. But he still blamed the concussions on Belichick.
     
  13. Seymour93

    Seymour93 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    TJ hasn't admitted to taking the drugs during his playing days. According to him, his personal life all started to spiral out of control after his retirement. Studies have shown that ex-NFL players on average are much more depressed than normal every day folk. It would make sense for a person who's suffering from depression and chronic physical and mental pains to begin abusing drugs.

    I have no reason to think he's lying. Do you?
     
  14. DaBruinz

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    But the article glossed over or ignored facts. Like the fact that Ted Johnson was saying just 2 months ago that he was cleared and ready to play if Belichick called.

    It also glossed over some issues like the fact that amphetamine addiction can cause many of the same problems that Johnson is attributing to the concussions he had.

    The article wants you to believe that the concussions are the reason he was on the drugs, has the emotional issues and the physical issues. And that the reason behind the concussions was Bill Belichick and Bill Belichick alone.

    Lets face it. Had Ted Johnson told BB that he couldn't go in 2002, then Ted Johnson isn't here in 2003. And the Pats start their ILB search 2 years earlier. And history is re-written. The reason Ted Johnson didn't tell BB about the concussion is because of the money, imho. Johnson made at least 4.1 million over the last 3 years with the Pats. That is money he wouldn't have had otherwise.
     
  15. NEPat

    NEPat Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    The one thing he is blaming Belichick for is giving him the blue jersey after the doctors did not clear him to play. That doesn't mean that Belichick wanted him to suffer brain damage, but that he made a mistake. Both Johnson and Bill say that.

    And he shouldn't have put it on. But that's the thing that Johnson points out, he put it on for "pride," "they weren't going to beat me." It's why he says at the end of the article: ‘‘It’s not just the New England Patriots that need to change how they do things, it’s the entire culture of the NFL.’’

    It's that feeling that he had to put on the jersey, that his game time and his reputation would suffer if he didn't play through pain.

    I also didn't get the impression that Johnson thinks Belichick is evil. He is just being honest about what happened, and the team records back him up, and so do a few of the players.
     
  16. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I don't think he is lying. However, I DO question his blaming other people for his issues.

    Also, amphetamines are amongst the LAST things someone with post concussion syndrome should be taking. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that they exacerbate the situation. That is just my opinion based on the bits that I have read about amphetamines.

    I don't remember 100%, but I seem ot remember that Ted Johnson and his wife had "domestic" issues prior to his retirement.
     
  17. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree that the entire NFL needs to change. However, as ESPN the Magazine pointed out, the NFL and NFLPA has some stooges in place that only tell the NFL what they want to hear. Their "concussion team" has had their veracity questioned quite severely by ESPN, to the point that, if I remember correctly, the NFL had a cease and desist injunction slapped on them regarding the topic.
     
  18. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress In the Starting Line-Up

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    I never claimed he is lying. But the team official alludes to a history of mental issues of which we are unaware, and which the Globe ignores. No doubt they are subject to medical privacy laws. Without that background, I believe this article is incomplete and misleading. Why didn't Johnson retire earlier? No one constrained him from doing so. His willingness to publicly tarnish the reputation of another man, casting Belichick as the villain who destroyed his life, is reprehensible IMO. If Johnson's desire was truly to promote concussion awareness, the recrimination would be absent. Others, such as Merril Hoge, have done so without smearing Chuck Noll.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2007
  19. g-fresh

    g-fresh On the Game Day Roster

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    A few things stood out to me in this article, namely the fact that TJ started playing in 1995 and they never mention another coach besides Belichick. As much as I want to be behind TJ here he's making it sound like someone put a gun to his head to make him get on the field when he knew that he would be correct in not doing so.
     
  20. NEPat

    NEPat Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    I think because it seems like Ted himself points to the concussions as the cause of a lot of his problems, the article does too. But yeah, you make valid points, although I feel that the incidents described in the story are still troubling, even if let's say they had no impact on his emotional or mental health. Feeling pressured to play through injury, play on the field being affected because of it, etc. And it also highlights the sad state of Johnson's life right now. It's a shame.

    Maybe I'm just reading the article differently, but I don't think Johnson is trying to smear Belichick and make him out to be the devil who ruined his life. He's telling the truth about this one incident. Belichick wanted him to play after the trainers said no. That's what he's upset about in regards to Belichick. There was also the quote from Phifer that said the team did the wrong thing. And Johnson said Belichick admitted he made a mistake.

    It seems to me that he's saying what happened with the Patriots is a common thing in the NFL. He wants teams to be more careful dealing with concussions.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2007

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