Former NFL star Demaryius Thomas’ household says he had CTE

Former NFL star Demaryius Thomas, who died final December at age 33, had CTE, his household stated Tuesday.

Boston University CTE Center researchers recognized the four-time Professional Bowl extensive receiver with stage 2 persistent traumatic encephalopathy following a mind research by means of the Concussion Legacy Basis. Thomas’ household launched the findings of the research.

“As soon as I turned conscious of CTE and commenced to familiarize myself with the signs, I observed that Demaryius was isolating himself and I noticed different modifications in him,” Katina Smith, Demaryius’ mom, stated in an announcement. “He was simply so younger, and it was horrible to see him battle. His father and I hope all households be taught the dangers of taking part in soccer. We do not need different mother and father to need to lose their youngsters like we did.”

Stage 2 CTE is related to “progressive habits, cognitive and temper abnormalities.” Members of the family say Thomas developed despair, anxiousness, panic assaults, and bother together with his reminiscence within the years earlier than his demise. Stage 4 is probably the most extreme stage of CTE and is often related to dementia.

“Like so many who have gone earlier than, we discovered stage 2 CTE within the mind of Demaryius Thomas. The query I hold asking myself is ‘When will sufficient be sufficient?’ When will athletes, mother and father and the general public at massive cease ignoring the dangers of American soccer and demand that the sport be modified to cut back subconcussive hits?” stated Dr. Ann McKee, chief of neuropathology for the VA Boston Healthcare System and director of the BU CTE Heart and VA-BU-CLF/UNITE Mind Financial institution.

CLF co-founder and CEO Dr. Chris Nowinski organized the research by means of Thomas’ household.

Denver Broncos and the Los Angeles Rams
DENVER, CO – OCTOBER 14: Demaryius Thomas #88 of the Denver Broncos, catches a move for a landing because the Broncos play the Los Angeles Rams, at Broncos Stadium at Mile Excessive, on October 14, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. Broncos misplaced 23-20 to the Rams.

RJ Sangosti/The Denver Publish by way of Getty Pictures

“The soccer neighborhood would don’t know why so many former gamers battle with neurological issues after their profession with out the households who say sure to mind donation, so I wish to thank Bobby Thomas and Katina Smith — and all households — for his or her belief in Dr. McKee and this group,” said Nowinski, a former soccer participant at Harvard. “I hope this can be a wake-up name to excessive profile present and former NFL gamers that CTE is rampant amongst them, and they should become involved in creating actual options. CTE must be their primary off-the-field challenge.”

Thomas is one among greater than 300 former NFL gamers who’ve been recognized with CTE by McKee and the BU CTE Heart analysis group.

Thomas’ reason for demise has not but been recognized. In 2021, Thomas started experiencing seizures. McKee informed ABC Information she believes the seizures had been resulting from extreme traumatic accidents off the soccer discipline, together with a automotive wreck and a fall on stone stairs.

“CTE itself doesn’t trigger demise. You do not die from CTE. What CTE does is it modifications your habits and your character,” McKee stated.

Thomas performed 10 seasons within the NFL for the Denver Broncos, New York Jets, and Houston Texans. He gained a Tremendous Bowl with the Broncos and Peyton Manning following the 2015 season.

Thomas had 724 catches for 9,763 yards and 63 touchdowns.

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