NYPost- A lawyer for Aaron Hernandez said Thursday that the former NFL player — who committed suicide in prison — had suffered from a “severe” case of the degenerative brain disease CTE.
The attorney said that an autopsy showed that Hernandez, who died at 27 while serving life in prison, had a disease common in players called chronic traumatic encephalopathy.
The lawyer, Jose Baez, said in a news conference Thursday, that researchers determined it was “the most severe case they had ever seen in someone of Aaron’s age,” according to The New York Times.
In addition, Hernandez’s fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez, filed a lawsuit against the Patriots and the NFL — claiming they did not warn him about the brain disease, according to TMZ.
“Aaron had stage 3 CTE usually seen in players with a median age of death of 67 years,” Jenkins told the site.
Filing on behalf of her daughter Jenkins seeks “redress for the loss of parental consortium… based on the negligent conduct of Defendants that deprived her of the companionship and society of her father, Aaron Hernandez.”
In the sense that modern science - in the form of Will Smith with a piss poor accent - has taught us that we shouldn't be surprised when people that spent the vast majority of their formative years smashing skulls with with their peers develop a disease that deteriorates the brain, I suppose this news isn't all that shocking. Still, I can't imagine it's something that Roger Goodell and Co. wanted to hear. I hardly think the NFL played the role of the Manitowoc County Police Department in 'Making A Murderer' who was far more dangerous to society than Steven Avery. To put it bluntly, Aaron Hernandez was way too shitty of a person to blame all his flaws as a human and every black mark on his rap sheet on the repetitive head shots he willingly put himself at risk of taking. That said, the fact that professional football could have potentially played even the most minor of roles in turning a run-of-the-mill criminal into a cold-blooded killer (of others, as well as himself) is an awful, awful look for the league.
Let's put it this way. If we can't definitively say that someone with an extensive list of priors was of a relatively sound mind that was clouded by nothing more than a little bit of weed when he shot multiple people dead then there is no type of outlandish behavior from still living football players we that should be feel comfortable being quick to judge. Considering the asinine amount of evidence that he left behind, I already thought that Aaron Hernandez' brain was filled with rocks so I'm not going to plea on behalf of his mental health postmortem. It's just scary that the inherent dangers of the most popular sport on the planet have absolutely given the widow of a now-deceased 27 year old every right to.