The NFC championship game in question actually took place in January 1994, when Aikman was knocked out of the game on the third snap of the second half after taking a knee to the head from 49ers defensive end Dennis Brown. The Cowboys already were up 28-7 at the time, and Bernie Kosar finished up what would be a 38-21 victory. Aikman returned for the Super Bowl against the Bills a week later and led Dallas to its second straight Super Bowl victory.
Leigh Steinberg, Aikman’s agent, talked about the game and its aftermath on the PBS “Frontline” documentary “League of Denial.” You can see footage of the hit in the below clip.
“He looked at me and he said, ‘Leigh, where am I?’ And I said, ‘Well, you’re in the hospital,’ ” Steinberg says in the above clip. “And he said, ‘Well, why am I here?’ And I said, ‘because you suffered a concussion today.’ And he said, ‘Well, who did we play?’ And I said, ‘The 49ers.’ And he said, ‘Did we win?’ ‘Yes, you won.’ ‘Did I play well?’ ‘Yes, you played well.’ ‘And so what’s that mean?’ ‘It means you’re going to the Super Bowl.’ ”
And then, five minutes later, the same conversation repeated itself because Aikman didn’t remember talking about it just moments before.
Speaking to reporters two days after that 1994 game, Aikman repeated a mantra about head injuries that has since taken on chilling undertones, considering all the research into the debilitating long-term effects of repeated head injuries that’s happened since then.
“They say once you have one [a concussion], the chances of it occurring again are greater. But I don’t worry about it. … It’s part of playing the game,” he said, according to the report from The Post’s Leonard Shapiro.