Former RB Jahvid Best says he had ‘brain damage’ with Lions

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When the Detroit Lions selected RB Jahvid Best with the No. 30 overall selection in the 2010 NFL Draft, the hope was that he would come in and give the team the rushing attack they had not seen since the retirement of Barry Sanders.

Unfortunately, Best dealt with multiple brain injuries (concussions) during his 22 games with the Lions and he was ultimately forced to retire from the NFL.

On Wednesday, Best joined the ‘Baligian and Bell’ show featuring Sean Baligian and former Lions’ RB Joique Bell and he talked about why he called it quits.

“Speaking on the concussion thing, it was really like a tricky situation. I felt fine as a person. I had no like lingering effects. But, at the same time, I had like literally brain damage in my head. I just basically made this decision. It wasn’t safe for me to keep putting myself in harm’s way, but physically I was fine,” Best said. “And that was the toughest part. Man, it took a while, because I was still fast. I was the strongest, (in the) best shape of my life. And I also felt like I was just getting healthy. I was struggling with turf toe my rookie season, and my second year, the turf toe was good. So, I was feeling healthy. I felt like I was really getting my feet set, and then the concussions came along. But, you know, that’s just how life goes, man.” 

Bell was an exciting, young running back who had all of the talents in the world. It’s sad we only got to see him run the football for such a short amount of time.