Steelers CB Artie Burns believes he already has CTE
Sports Illustrated recently conducted a fascinating players poll on the subject of CTE. Players from Redskins QB Kirk Cousins to Seahawks DE Michael Bennett were asked their thoughts on a slew of CTE hypotheticals. Would these players take the test, should one become available? If they took a test and tested positive, would they retire? Similar questions followed suit and all the responses are worth reading. One, however, stood out.
On the subject of testing, Steelers CB Artie Burns provided a blunt response,
“I definitely know I have it. I’m going to [test positive for] CTE. I don’t need a test. Is it going to tell me how much I have? We play a physical sport, man. Humans are not made to run into each other.”
Burns’s terrifying response comes two months after researchers announced a gamechanging breakthrough that may allow for CTE to be tested in the living. Currently, it can only be posthumously diagnosed. The study’s lead author, Bennett Omalu, the pathologist who discovered CTE and inspired the film, Concussion, believed they had found CTE in ex-NFL LB Fred McNeill during a 2012 UCLA study. McNeil passed away three years later, and an autopsy confirmed the CTE diagnosis.
This summer the New York Times published a disturbing report that a neurologist had tested the brains of 111 deceased NFL players. 110 of they had CTE.
The landscape of the NFL soon be changing.