Former All-Pro offensive lineman Kyle Turley went on ESPN’s Highly Questionable on Thursday afternoon to talk about alternative medicine for treating football injuries. More specifically, Turley is an advocate for medical marijuana being an option instead of pharmaceuticals, which he claims drove him to his “lowest point in life.”
Turley, who retired from football in 2007 after several concussions, has spoken out about injuries in football and painkillers frequently in the past. In this latest interview with ESPN, Turley details how the various medications he’s been prescribed led him to suicidal and homicidal thoughts, forcing him to consider alternatives before his life spiraled out of control.
Depression, anxiety, light sensitivity got worse, and suicidal and homicidal tendencies became a part of my daily living, in that I couldn’t be around a knife in my kitchen without having an urge to stab someone, including my wife and kids. That was highly disturbing to me.
Regardless of your opinion on cannabis as a medical entity, Turley’s entire interview is worth a watch. With plenty of recent scientific studies showing the damage that football can inflict on the human brain, it’s important to consider anything that may help make the game safer, or at least limit the effects for those who play it.
And while it’s pretty heavy to hear Turley talk about his battle so openly, it’s also necessary if he hopes to convince the skeptics that medical marijuana is a beneficial treatment for those dealing with the violent and painful consequences of a life in football. Hopefully they’re listening.