Thursday, May 19, 2011
Kevin Turner to discuss ALS-football link
Two months ago, former New England Patriots fullback Kevin Turner pulled no punches when he shared his wrenching story with the AFC East blog.
Turner has been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the incurable neuromuscular disorder commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Football might have caused it.
Turner will be a panelist on "Lou Dobbs Tonight" to discuss the link between football and ALS. The show will air 7 p.m. ET Friday on Fox Business Network.
As detailed in the story that ran here, there's mounting evidence repeated head trauma increases the chances of ALS. The latest data shows NFL players have eight to 10 times the likelihood of being diagnosed with ALS than the average person.
"Football had something to do with it," Turner told me in March. "I don't know to what extent, and I may not ever know. But there are too many people I know that have ALS and played football in similar positions. They seem to be linebackers, fullbacks, strong safeties. Those are big collision guys."
Turner spent three seasons with the Patriots before signing a big free-agent deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.
"There's nobody out there who wouldn't like [Turner] as a person, player, practice habits, versatility," former Patriots head coach Bill Parcells said. "This kid had everything. He was a special kid."