Episode 3 Premieres Tonight at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME®
Romanowski Says He Suffered 500 Concussions,
Weighs In On Playing Dirty, Cheating in Sports and
Why Tim Tebow Should be Starting for the NY Jets
Also, Jim Rome Goes One-On-One With Fletcher and Foster
LOS ANGELES (Dec. 5, 2012) – The third episode of JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME will air tonight at 10 p.m. ET / PT with a lineup that includes former NFL star Bill Romanowski, Emmy Award winning sports reporter Jim Gray and Pulitzer Prize winning author David Maraniss. The three joined host Jim Rome in a spirited debate on safety issues and cheating in the NFL, and were later joined by boxing heavyweight world champion Wladimir Klitschko.
Also on the show, Rome does one-on-one interviews with Washington Redskins linebacker London Fletcher, and Houston Texans running back Arian Foster.
JIM ROME ON SHOWTIME, in its first season on SHOWTIME, airs Wednesdays with multiple replays each week on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME® and availability on SHOWTIME ON DEMAND.
Following are excerpts from this week’s episode:
JIM ROME: A recent New York Times story came out saying there is a link between NFL players taking frequent hits and brain damage. Are you concerned about this?
BILL ROMANOWSKI: Absolutely. I was concerned when I was playing. That’s why I went above and beyond and tried to supplement around it. One of the doctors from Boston University came out and spoke to retired players and he said it’s not just the big concussions you have to worry about. It’s those hits at the line where you get into somebody. The little jolt. Those happen more frequently than the big hit. Those are the ones you have to worry about.
ROME: Do you have any idea how may concussions you suffered during your career?
ROMANOWSKI: Five hundred or more. Diganosed: 20. But I saw stars every time I hit somebody for 16 years. And in college.
ROME: Is Ndamukong Suh a dirty player?
ROMANOWSKI: Yes he’s dirty. There are a lot of players in the NFL who play defense at a high level that are dirty. To me, you have to be.
ROME: Why do you have to be? Nasty is fine. Dirty is not though, right? Or are you telling me dirty is OK?
ROMANOWSKI: It’s the nature of the game. When you’re going 100 percent on every play and you’ve got 300-pound men trying to hurt you on some level, who are trained to hurt you and block you, to drive you into the ground, you’re going to on some level cross that line.
ROME: Do you have any drug-related regrets?
ROMANOWSKI: Yes. I wish I could have done things differently. But guess what? I was caught up in the high of the game. But it didn’t give me an advantage. Do you know what did? It was out-working every single player who ever came into the locker room.
ROME: Then why do it?
ROMANOWSKI: Because I was scared. I wanted to be the best in the world. I was scared. I wanted that high of playing in the NFL to last forever. I loved what I did every day. I was the happiest player on planet Earth playing in the NFL. I wanted to play until I was 40.
ROME: Because of the events of the past week (the murder-suicide of Jovan Belcher), should the Kansas City Chiefs have played that football game?
ROMANOWSKI: Absolutely. I don’t see how you could in any way say you should not play that football game. I don’t see it. He did murder somebody. I get that. But if he stayed alive he would have been put in prison and the game would have gone on. So the fact that he killed himself would be the reason to stop the football game?
JIM GRAY: If you’re going to play after President Kennedy was assassinated and the whole country was in that circumstance. And if you’re going to play after Hurricane Sandy and so many people were displaced then certainly I think the right decision was made here.
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