Over the past few years, we've seen countless stories of former NFL players suffering from debilitating pain and depression they attribute to the violence of their careers. So I appreciated the approach ESPN's Kelly Naqi took in this "Outside the Lines" profile of retired running back Leroy Hoard, who played the final four seasons of his 10-year career with the Minnesota Vikings.
The piece focuses more on how Hoard, 45, is living with his ailments. Hoard admits to memory loss and that he spends hours at a time in a dark bathroom, but he recognizes the events over the past decade that have prevented him from joining a growing list of former players who have committed suicide.
Hoard cites his recent marriage, along with his friendships with ex-teammates Robert Smith and Keith Byars for maintaining his quality of life. At the same time, he regularly writes down the names of three contemporaries -- Andre Waters, Dave Duerson and Junior Seau -- who have killed themselves. He doesn't want to forget what happened to them.
Check it out.