Brett Favre urges no tackle football for kids under 14

·3-min read

Brett Favre is speaking out on an issue that's very personal to him: CTE, the progressive brain disease. Favre appears in a new PSA urging parents not to let their kids play tackle football until they're 14, warning that the longer a kid plays tackle football, the likelier they are to develop CTE. 

He discussed the PSA, which he did in partnership with the Concussion Legacy Foundation, in an interview on CNN Tuesday afternoon. However, after urging people to trust the science and research on CTE, Favre refused to say if he'd gotten the COVID-19 vaccine and implied that the vaccines may not be safe. 

Brett Favre's affecting PSA on CTE

Favre's PSA for the Concussion Legacy Foundation doesn't hold back when describing the troubling symptoms of CTE, and why parents shouldn't let their kids play tackle football until they're 14. The PSA goes through what a kid with CTE would experience through the years, arriving finally at what a guy in his 50s — played by Favre — would be going through. 

The PSA obviously hit close to home for Favre, who played for 19 professional seasons, but also in college, high school, and when he was even younger. He told "Today" that he worries about whether the things he experiences day-to-day are normal signs of aging, or the symptoms of CTE. 

"I don't know what normal feels like. Do I have CTE? I really don't know," Favre said. "Concussions are a very, very serious thing and we're just scraping the surface of how severe they are."

Favre's comments on COVID-19 vaccine

MIAMI, FLORIDA - JANUARY 31: Former NFL player Brett Favre speaks onstage during day 3 of SiriusXM at Super Bowl LIV on January 31, 2020 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM )
Brett Favre is concerned about kids getting CTE after playing tackle football when they're too young. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM )

Favre trusts the science on concussions and CTE, but not so much on the COVID-19 vaccine. Kate Bolduan, anchor for CNN's "At This Hour," asked Favre on Tuesday why he thinks the NFL is having trouble getting all the players to trust the vaccine. 

“There’s a great deal of uncertainty,” Favre said via Mediaite. “You hear one thing one day, and you hear something that’s totally different the next. And this is from experts, experts on both sides of the argument. The vaccines that have been administered within the last six to eight months didn’t go through a 20 or 30-year human trial study that the FDA requires.”

Favre didn't specify what conflicting information he'd been hearing or where he'd heard it from. The FDA does not require a "20 or 30-year human trial study" before a vaccine goes to market. The clinical trials for all the available COVID-19 vaccines were done on tens of thousands of people using strict scientific standards, and the vaccine has since been given out safely to tens of millions of people.

Bolduan asked Favre if he'd been vaccinated, and he wouldn't say one way or the other. 

“I’d rather not say one way or the other. It’s not my place to say get the vaccine or don’t get the vaccine, I think that’s a matter of choice by all individuals and that’s why we live in America.”

“If you’re concerned about it, go to a professional who has studied that field. Not just a medical doctor, someone who knows a lot of information. Do your due diligence and then make your decision.”

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