The Washington Post

Bears’ Brian Urlacher discusses painkiller use and masking concussions

Toradol, a non-addictive, non-narcotic drug that is an anti-inflammatory, is the subject of a lawsuit former players have filed against the NFL.

The drug, which reportedly can lead to kidney failure and gastrointestinal bleeding, also is the topic of a “Real Sports” report that will air at 9 p.m. EST tonight on HBO. In Andrea Kremer’s report, Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher talked about his use of the drug, roughly 40 or 50 times in his career, in pill form.

“It’s been around a long time,” Urlacher said in HBO’s report. “I saw guys take it my rookie year. I didn’t know what it was. I didn’t have any reason to get one. I’ll take it if I have an ankle or a shoulder [injury], but I don’t just take them to take them. From what I understand, some guys just take them to take them. They take them every game because they can’t play without them. I don’t know anyone on our team that’s like that.”

Make no mistake, though, Urlacher wants to be on the field at any cost.

“First of all, we love football,” Urlacher said. “We want to be on the field as much as we can be. If we can be out there, it may be stupid, it may be dumb, call me dumb and stupid then, because I want to be on the football field.”

And that applies to concusssions.

“If I have a concussion these days, I'm going to say something happened to my toe or knee just to get my bearings for a few plays,” he said. “I'm not going to sit in there and say I got a concussion. [Then] I can't go in there the rest of the game.”

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.


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