I basically only watched this because my husband suggested it, he’s a big True Crime TV person and although I can like it sometimes, it has to be in small doses. I’m also not at all into football or professional sports in general. I’ve never understood the drive to get invested in a team where you don’t know anyone on the field. I like playing games with friends, but fuck me, I’ve got better things to do than watch strangers do it for more money than any of us will ever see in our lifetimes. That said, people who are super famous and murder people tend to draw attention, and this guy gets his own three-part documentary.
I don’t think it needed to be quite as drawn out as it was, I think a two-part series would have been more than enough to be thorough and present everything that needed to be addressed. I did manage to have some sympathy for professional players however, not necessarily this guy, but I was previously unaware of a condition known as CTE, or Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. It’s caused by repeated blows to the head which boxers and footballers are especially prone to dealing with on a regular basis. There are dementia-like symptoms that accompany it, along with impairments to judgment and rational thinking. Professional athletes who are already very large, competitive and fit/strong people are now suffering from a disease that can make them prone to violence. It’s not a good combination. This is obviously not the only reason why this guy turned out to be so unhinged, it’s not an excuse for his behavior, but it’s something that needs to be addressed.
Aaron had a hard upbringing, his father once beat his mother into a sink so badly she lost consciousness. He was an alcoholic, she was explosive as well oftentimes hitting his father with a telephone or other objects when he would come home drunk. His mother didn’t have a great relationship with her kids, either. He was dealing with some SERIOUS inwardly directed homophobia. It was clear to many around him that he was at the very least, bisexual, but he never would admit to it and felt a need to ‘overcompensate’ for it. Sadly, it was also linked to his violence against others.
This was a weird documentary, but it was informative and morbidly interesting. We can’t just expect people to take blow after blow to the head and then retire quietly with no repercussions. The average lifespan of a professional NFL player is under 60 according to Wiki
The average life expectancy or lifespan of an American football NFL player has been reported to be extremely low, only 53 to 59 years depending on playing position
The NFL calls this a myth on their website and claims that NFL players actually live longer than men in the general population.
I think more study needs to go into this, as well as other high contact sports like boxing to find the truth, and help those who need it. Living with permanent brain damage isn’t easy no matter how you came to suffer from the condition. It can lead to unnecessary tragedy if left untreated and undiagnosed.
I’m disinclined to rate documentaries, so I’ll just say that for someone uninterested in sports and True Crime stuff, I found this interesting and worth the time to watch.