Welp, Aaron Hernandez had CTE...

Submitted by FauxMo on September 21st, 2017 at 4:11 PM


Apparently it was "one of the most severe cases anyone had ever seen," and he was only 27 at the time of his death. It certainly doesn't excuse his disgusting actions, but it may help explain why such a young guy with a bright future and all the money in the world seemed to like to murder people for fun? 



September 21st, 2017 at 4:18 PM ^

Well, he died at 27 this year, and hadn't played football in almost 4 years before that. So he was roughly 23 when he quit football after only 3 NFL seasons. It seems pretty clear to me, given how bad his form of the condition apparently was, that he most likely developed it before the pros, maybe even in high school. 


September 21st, 2017 at 10:03 PM ^

the finding severely undermines the dominant narrative about Hernandez--that he was an inherently violent person destined to kill and die; it places blame on the game. 

Perhaps more emerges that bolsters your thesis. But this is going to prove a landmark for lawyers and others who argue that football is too dangerous. And the liability questions are going to become ferocious. I don't doubt that this will bring a wave of reaction from fans, but they'll only be angry at the messenger. We are going to see more high schools dropping football, for starters. 

I've been a fan since the 1980s; my Dad knew Bo and my whole immediate family and grandfather went to Michigan--football has been a family touchstone since the 1950s. But this finding could well presage huge changes ahead (no pun intended) for the game. 


September 22nd, 2017 at 10:52 AM ^

sad actually.  Aaron Hernandez killed himself to shield assets in a civil suit and to allow Baez to pursue legal action against the NFL to benefit his family.  There have been countless studies done on serial killers showing various differences in brain chemistry and brain functionality.  Oh, but this guy was a football player, so it is different?  So, not only does he kill multiple people, but now he will get to cash in on being a murderer and do his best to destroy the game of football from the grave. 

I hope the first Judge that sees this case tells Baez to get the hell out of his courtroom.  There is a special place in hell for Hernandez, and the number of people who are willfully accepting this man as a victim of anything is silly.


September 21st, 2017 at 4:23 PM ^

when he allegedly shot into a car full of people at a Gainesville club.  I dont believe that barrier ever existed with Aaron Hernandez.  I'm not denying that he had CTE, but I'm having a hard time believing that he was an angel before he got concussed playing football.


September 21st, 2017 at 4:35 PM ^

Oh, most likely not. But shit, what if he started playing really young and really aggressively at that age, and did suffer tons of micro-concussions or something? That can certainly lead to mood and violence disorders... 

Whole Milk

September 21st, 2017 at 4:22 PM ^

I do not think this is news worthy for potential reasoning for all of his wrong doing. Hernandez clearly had other issues that played a major role in him doing the heinous things he did, I think it is significant for another reason.

Since our current way of determining CTE is post-mortem, it is very difficult to determine if new safety regulations are truly helping, or at least negating the advancements in size and strength that are causing harder collisions. Hernandez still being so young is news worthy for that debate. This could just be a one off instance that doesn't reflect the league as a whole, or this could be very bad evidence for those who suggest that the game is safer now than before. 


September 21st, 2017 at 8:25 PM ^

its not the NFL level that is the major fence here.The size and speed is relative to the mass of each player. NFL guys have more developed shoulders, neck, and support structure limiting their rotational forces and contact which exasurbates concussion. High school and youth football not only have greater size disparity,the level of technique, poor form, lack of musculature, all increase the risks of damage and CTE. All the safety measures must start at younger and younger ages.

Sextus Empiricus

September 22nd, 2017 at 1:57 AM ^

 APOE4 has been indicated to modulate mTBI recovery.  The data set for CTE is pretty small and in the hands of relatively few researchers.   The money is in mTBI.

There's been hub bub about it in the Huffington Post as well as regards CTE.

Here is a 2016 rundown that is pretty good. 


It's never straight up and down.



September 22nd, 2017 at 8:28 AM ^

They are coming to the same conclusion you just did, except it's a conclusion based upon headlines, most of which are anecdotal and still today lack enough statistical evidence. To repeat my losing battle: we know far too little about these links to draw safe or unsafe conclusions. 

Sextus Empiricus

September 22nd, 2017 at 9:50 AM ^

this.  We need to wait for the subjects, identified by their symptoms and head trauma clinical evaluatoins to be neuropathologically evaluated.  

At a certain point this will become hard science.  Even then it's tricky.  There is a considerable amount of crossover / comorbidity with other neurodegenerative disorders.




September 21st, 2017 at 4:18 PM ^

and the steady drumbeat of confirmatory datapoints on football causing CTE is truly brutal, and may cause a cresting in football's popularity.  Hope the new helmets and new rukes help.  Sad