I don’t agree with Kurt Warner on everything he says. Personally, I think he is being too easy on the New Orleans Saints for the bounty scandal. However, when he came out the day after Junior Seau killed himself and said he doesn’t think he’d want his sons to play football, I have no problem with that. Neither should Meril Hoge or Amani Toomer. If they have a problem with Warner speaking out for how he feels about his kids, then that’s the opinion that should be kept to themselves.
Hoge and Toomer had problems with Warner speaking out because they felt the comments tarnish the game of football. They think his comments will deter other parents from letting their kids play in the future. They both thought Warner threw the game of football under the bus, basically biting the hand that fed him.
No he isn’t. First of all, he never came out and said that he wouldn’t let his sons play. He just said he worried about his sons wanting to play. Warner doesn’t seem like the kind of guy that would keep people from doing what they’d like, especially his sons. Secondly, Warner did come out and adjust his comments, although I think some of that was based on the backlash he got, not necessarily he he really feels. I get it.
Hoge called Warner “uneducated” and “uninformed”. What? I think Warner has played long enough in the game to understand what a hit can do to the body. Warner didn’t come out and say “don’t let your kids play football”. Nowhere did he say that at any time. Hoge, who I could call so many things cause I think many of his comments outside of this issue are ignorant, should be the one to look at himself in the mirror.
As for Toomer, he has the right to his opinions too, however he clearly should keep it to himself when ripping Warner for being worried about his sons. It is so amazing to me. Here’s a guy, Warner, people just loved as a player and love as a person. Nobody ever said we all had to agree with Warner’s takes on life and the game. However, as a parent myself of a young boy, why wouldn’t I worry about him and his desires to play sports? I would love for my son to get into football or baseball. That’s doesn’t keep me from worrying about the dangers of the sports.
My father played high school football and baseball. Same in college. He played for Northwestern. He quit not because of risk of injury, but because of size. He never steered me away from the game of football. However, I never played. I never played because of what I did see the game do to people who did play. I didn’t feel like waking up every morning for the rest of my life feeling like crap or putting my body through such trauma. I applaud the guys that do in order to do something they love and entertain the rest of us. When I was in high school, one of the football coaches approached me one day and said he’d love for me to get into the weight room and start working out. He’d work with me. I was of course flattered by the offer, but I just said I really wasn’t interested. Not that I didn’t love the game of football. Not because I didn’t want the physical activity because God knows I needed it, but because I was afraid of what the game would do to my body. I formulated the opinion on my own.
So Hoge and Toomer are off on this. Kids will still do what they want to do for the most part. I don’t think anything Warner said will deter anyone from playing the game. Will it make them think? Probably. However, I’d want everybody who thinks they are ready to step into the game to think about the rewards and consequences of playing before taking one step onto a field. I think that’s all Warner was saying here. He has a worry and as a parent, he has every right.