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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Everson Griffen will make his kids wait until high school to play football

By Matthew Coller

Everson Griffen has been on Cloud Nine lately. He’s one of the NFL’s leaders in sacks, his team has won seven in a row and he and his wife just welcomed their third child to the world.

On Thanksgiving day, Griffen tried to find a flight back to be present for his third son Sebastian’s birth, but “little Sea-Bass,” as Griffen jokingly called him Wednesday, came too quickly. So Griffen watched his birth on FaceTime while warming up for the Vikings’ matchup with the Detroit Lions.

When Griffen sacked Lions QB Matthew Stafford, he pulled up his jersey to reveal a note written on his undershirt asking for name suggestions.

”I got a lot of crazy baby names, Thunderbolt, Mike Zimmer, Zygi Wilf, I forget how many names I went through,” Griffen said.

The Vikings’ star pass rusher was asked Wednesday if he will let his three sons to play football.

“I will allow them to play, but they won’t play until like freshman year of high school,” Griffen said. “I’m going to hold them back and let them play baseball, soccer and basketball.”

There’s science to back Griffen’s parenting. The New York Times reported this September that a study found playing football before the age of 12 had elevated risks of depression and behavioral issues.

“The brain is going through this incredible time of growth between the years of 10 and 12, and if you subject that developing brain to repetitive head impacts, it may cause problems later in life,” author of the study Robert Stern told the Times.

A Wake Forest study also found players age eight to 13 had diminished brain functions in parts of their brains.

“The brain is a sensitive area, so I want the least contact possible,” Griffen said.

The post Everson Griffen will make his kids wait until high school to play football appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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