NFL HOF'er predicts football demise within 20 years

[b]Lem Barney is an NFL legend, a Hall of Famer who made his living playing football.

And he wouldn't do it again.

Speaking Friday at the Sound Mind Sound Body Camp in Southfield, Mich., the Detroit Lions great said the sport would be gone within the next two decades.

He said he wishes he would have been a truck driver or a cab driver, anything other than a player suffering concussions.

"People often ask me do I miss the game, do I wish I could still play with all the money they're making today. Even with all of that, I'd say, 'Heck, no,' " Barney said. "The game is becoming more deadly today.

"It's a great game, and I think it's the greatest game if you like gladiators. It's the greatest game for yesteryear's gladiators. But in the next 10 to 20 years, society will alleviate football altogether because of how strong it's becoming, how big it's becoming and the tenacity that it already is. And it's only going to get worse."

Barney said he would "feel really bad" if he didn't say anything about what he knows.

He said he has been diagnosed in recent years with seven to eight concussions from his playing career. He said he shudders to see what the game has done to former players dying.

"You look at guys like Bubba Smith that left us, Dave Duerson that left us, Junior Seau as of late, that are killing themselves because of the head injuries they had," Barney said. "You hear about guys who played in championship games, Pro Bowlers and Super Bowls, but you don't hear about the regular Joe who plays the game and has killed themselves. The game is that deadly today."[/b]

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It'll be replaced, if it indeed does go the way of the dodo bird which I doubt, by a more violent MMA and rugby, or more violent hockey perhaps. There is just too much demand for contact sport IMHO.

I don't think it will be gone but it won't be the size it is now i could see 10-14 teams max.

personally, I can't see the complete evaporation of the NFL, however, it would not be a surprise if the NFL game/rules changed dramatically to curb the severe injuries incurred, or avoid the next paralysis or death attributed to the game.

There is talks of expanding the width of the NFL field to allieviate some of those big collisions. Players are getting bigger and stronger. The other aspects of the game do need to adapt to ensure the safety of the players involved.

The field is just too small for the NFL'ers of today who are much bigger, stronger and faster than yesteryear. I think anyways. There's going to continue to be concussion injuries big time.

I would like the CFL , to go to a 15 yard endzone.Make it some what challenging to get in to the endzone.

Yeah, a 15 yard endzone would be fine. But you have to consider there are only 3 downs in Canadian football and a 20 sec clock so it's already harder to score, some might say, along with an extra defender on defence (yes an extra man on offence but some say the extra defender trumps that).

Also, I guess people have heard about the Canadian Medical Ass'n saying NHL owners are too complacent with respect to head injuries. This short commentary has a point though as I was mentioning although I would like to see fighting banned personally but not bodychecking in hockey:

Is the Canadian Medical Association Part of the Anti-Fighting Cabal?

[i]"Seriously, where do these people get off? Hockey is an escape from the reality, for many people, including me. Now we have the Canadian Medical Association acting the National Hockey League. Yikes! This isn’t going to play out well in Canada.

Also, MMA is one of the most popular sports in North America; there is no way that it’s going to be banned. I wish some of the pointed headed experts would keep their noses out of our business. We live in a gladiator society and demand our sports; we don’t need the nanny state getting in the way." [/i]

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