The 1985 Chicago Bears are largely recognized as one the greatest NFL teams of all-time. After finishing the regular season 15-1, they breezed through the playoffs with back-to-back shutouts en-route to a 46-10 win over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XX. Two key members of that team, quarterback Jim McMahon and Super Bowl MVP Richard Dent, met with HBO’s Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel to talk about the effects that football had on them both physically and now mentally.
McMahon has been diagnosed with early onset dementia and has daily battles with memory loss. He says that sometimes things get so bad that he won’t get out of bed for weeks at a time. Dent discussed the full cocktail of drugs and alcohol that players took after games in order to cope with the physical pain. Former Bears coach Mike Ditka also joined the conversation, saying the NFL has an obligation to its former players that it’s currently flat-out ignoring.
The full segment airs on HBO this Tuesday, January 20th at 10pm ET.