Sure, some of the rules instilled by modern-day sports might be a little overboard — athletes have curfews, dress codes, etc. But, when it comes to the restrictions put in place to protect players, they were probably needed.
Before some of you hardcore fans get uptight, you need to look into the story of former Cincinnati linebacker Reggie Williams.
The retired, 58-year-old linebacker played in two Super Bowls with the Bengals and is still the team’s all-time leader among linebackers in most categories including tackles. He played for 14 years and in 206 games, from 1976 through 1989.
But, despite his accomplishments, Williams’ career have left him criples with a likely tragic future: the amputation of his right leg — doctors tell him is inevitable. According to Cincinnati.com, he’s had 24 surgeries on his right knee over the years, dating back to early in his career. Today, it’s almost unrecognizable (as seen below).
After all the surgeries, his right leg is nearly three-inches shorter than his left; he now requires crutches to walk; and is on the verge of losing his leg altogether. He’s also part of a class-action lawsuit brought by more than 4,500 players against the league seeking justice for a multitude of injuries, including his right knee … and leg.
Read Williams’ full story at Cincinnati.com.