Warren Sapp donating brain to science, says memory affected by concussions

By Jesse Reed
Oct 31, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; NFL Network analyst Warren Sapp before a game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Former NFL superstar Warren Sapp is the latest in a growing number of players who have decided to donate their brains to science.

The Hall of Famer penned a short essay on The Players’ Tribune in which he says his memory has been taking a hit from all the hits he took during his playing career. He wants something positive to come out of all that, so he’ll allow CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) experts to study his brain postmortem to gain a better understanding of brain injuries.

“I’ve also started to feel the effects of the hits that I took in my career. My memory ain’t what it used to be. And yeah, it’s scary to think that my brain could be deteriorating, and that maybe things like forgetting a grocery list, or how to get to a friend’s house I’ve been to a thousand times are just the tip of the iceberg. So when it comes to concussions, CTE and how we can make our game safer for future generations, I wanted to put my two cents in — to help leave the game better off than it was when I started playing.”

Sapp cites the startling study from last year that found an absurd percentage of deceased former NFL players had been found to be suffering from CTE.

During his playing career, Sapp was voted to seven Pro Bowls, four First-Team All-Pro squads and won a Super Bowl as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He finished his legendary career with 573 tackles, 96.5 sacks, 19 forced fumbles, four interceptions and three defensive touchdowns.