League of Denial - The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth-logo

League of Denial - The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth

Mark Fainaru-Wada

"PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL PLAYERS DO NOT SUSTAIN FREQUENT REPETITIVE BLOWS TO THE BRAIN ON A REGULAR BASIS." So concluded the National Football League in a December 2005 scientific paper on concussions in America's most popular sport. That judgment, implausible even to a casual fan, also contradicted the opinion of a growing cadre of neuroscientists who worked in vain to convince the NFL that it was facing a deadly new scourge: A chronic brain disease that was driving an alarming number of players -- including some of the all-time greats -- to madness. League of Denial reveals how the NFL, over a period of nearly two decades, sought to cover up and deny mounting evidence of the connection between football and brain damage. Comprehensively, and for the first time, award-winning ESPN investigative reporters Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru tell the story of a public health crisis that emerged from the playing fields of our 21st century pastime. Everyone knew that football is violent and dangerous. But what the players who built the NFL into a $10 billion industry didn't know - and what the league sought to shield from them - is that no amount of padding could protect the human brain from the force generated by modern football; that the very essence of the game could be exposing these players to brain damage. In a fast-paced narrative that moves between the NFL trenches, America's research labs and the boardrooms where the NFL went to war against science, League of Denial examines how the league used its power and resources to attack independent scientists and elevate its own flawed research -- a campaign with echoes of Big Tobacco's fight to deny the connection between smoking and lung cancer. It chronicles the tragic fates of players like Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Steelers center Mike Webster, who was so disturbed at the time of his death he fantasized about shooting NFL executives; and former Chargers great Junior Seau, whose diseased brain became the target of an unseemly scientific battle between researchers

"PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL PLAYERS DO NOT SUSTAIN FREQUENT REPETITIVE BLOWS TO THE BRAIN ON A REGULAR BASIS." So concluded the National Football League in a December 2005 scientific paper on concussions in America's most popular sport. That judgment, implausible even to a casual fan, also contradicted the opinion of a growing cadre of neuroscientists who worked in vain to convince the NFL that it was facing a deadly new scourge: A chronic brain disease that was driving an alarming number of players -- including some of the all-time greats -- to madness. League of Denial reveals how the NFL, over a period of nearly two decades, sought to cover up and deny mounting evidence of the connection between football and brain damage. Comprehensively, and for the first time, award-winning ESPN investigative reporters Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru tell the story of a public health crisis that emerged from the playing fields of our 21st century pastime. Everyone knew that football is violent and dangerous. But what the players who built the NFL into a $10 billion industry didn't know - and what the league sought to shield from them - is that no amount of padding could protect the human brain from the force generated by modern football; that the very essence of the game could be exposing these players to brain damage. In a fast-paced narrative that moves between the NFL trenches, America's research labs and the boardrooms where the NFL went to war against science, League of Denial examines how the league used its power and resources to attack independent scientists and elevate its own flawed research -- a campaign with echoes of Big Tobacco's fight to deny the connection between smoking and lung cancer. It chronicles the tragic fates of players like Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Steelers center Mike Webster, who was so disturbed at the time of his death he fantasized about shooting NFL executives; and former Chargers great Junior Seau, whose diseased brain became the target of an unseemly scientific battle between researchers
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"PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL PLAYERS DO NOT SUSTAIN FREQUENT REPETITIVE BLOWS TO THE BRAIN ON A REGULAR BASIS." So concluded the National Football League in a December 2005 scientific paper on concussions in America's most popular sport. That judgment, implausible even to a casual fan, also contradicted the opinion of a growing cadre of neuroscientists who worked in vain to convince the NFL that it was facing a deadly new scourge: A chronic brain disease that was driving an alarming number of players -- including some of the all-time greats -- to madness. League of Denial reveals how the NFL, over a period of nearly two decades, sought to cover up and deny mounting evidence of the connection between football and brain damage. Comprehensively, and for the first time, award-winning ESPN investigative reporters Mark Fainaru-Wada and Steve Fainaru tell the story of a public health crisis that emerged from the playing fields of our 21st century pastime. Everyone knew that football is violent and dangerous. But what the players who built the NFL into a $10 billion industry didn't know - and what the league sought to shield from them - is that no amount of padding could protect the human brain from the force generated by modern football; that the very essence of the game could be exposing these players to brain damage. In a fast-paced narrative that moves between the NFL trenches, America's research labs and the boardrooms where the NFL went to war against science, League of Denial examines how the league used its power and resources to attack independent scientists and elevate its own flawed research -- a campaign with echoes of Big Tobacco's fight to deny the connection between smoking and lung cancer. It chronicles the tragic fates of players like Hall of Fame Pittsburgh Steelers center Mike Webster, who was so disturbed at the time of his death he fantasized about shooting NFL executives; and former Chargers great Junior Seau, whose diseased brain became the target of an unseemly scientific battle between researchers

Language:

English

Narrators:

Steve Fainaru, David H. Lawrence XVII

Length:

14h 43m


Chapters

Chapter 1
Chapter 1

00:20


Chapter 2
Chapter 2

07:40


Chapter 3
Chapter 3

07:02


Chapter 4
Chapter 4

06:16


Chapter 5
Chapter 5

04:55


Chapter 6
Chapter 6

08:43


Chapter 7
Chapter 7

07:02


Chapter 8
Chapter 8

03:56


Chapter 9
Chapter 9

08:15


Chapter 10
Chapter 10

04:33


Chapter 11
Chapter 11

06:47


Chapter 12
Chapter 12

06:27


Chapter 13
Chapter 13

03:19


Chapter 14
Chapter 14

08:03


Chapter 15
Chapter 15

08:56


Chapter 16
Chapter 16

05:58


Chapter 17
Chapter 17

05:46


Chapter 18
Chapter 18

05:42


Chapter 19
Chapter 19

08:28


Chapter 20
Chapter 20

05:51


Chapter 21
Chapter 21

05:19


Chapter 22
Chapter 22

06:42


Chapter 23
Chapter 23

08:05


Chapter 24
Chapter 24

04:07


Chapter 25
Chapter 25

04:01


Chapter 26
Chapter 26

06:43


Chapter 27
Chapter 27

06:36


Chapter 28
Chapter 28

04:52


Chapter 29
Chapter 29

07:07


Chapter 30
Chapter 30

03:40


Chapter 31
Chapter 31

07:51


Chapter 32
Chapter 32

08:33


Chapter 33
Chapter 33

03:23


Chapter 34
Chapter 34

07:56


Chapter 35
Chapter 35

03:38


Chapter 36
Chapter 36

07:39


Chapter 37
Chapter 37

05:44


Chapter 38
Chapter 38

03:42


Chapter 39
Chapter 39

06:00


Chapter 40
Chapter 40

08:13


Chapter 41
Chapter 41

06:37


Chapter 42
Chapter 42

06:59


Chapter 43
Chapter 43

05:23


Chapter 44
Chapter 44

07:23


Chapter 45
Chapter 45

04:04


Chapter 46
Chapter 46

05:37


Chapter 47
Chapter 47

05:07


Chapter 48
Chapter 48

04:47


Chapter 49
Chapter 49

04:51


Chapter 50
Chapter 50

05:31


Chapter 51
Chapter 51

05:54


Chapter 52
Chapter 52

07:09


Chapter 53
Chapter 53

04:52


Chapter 54
Chapter 54

06:31


Chapter 55
Chapter 55

06:37


Chapter 56
Chapter 56

03:17


Chapter 57
Chapter 57

07:10


Chapter 58
Chapter 58

06:51


Chapter 59
Chapter 59

07:31


Chapter 60
Chapter 60

04:16


Chapter 61
Chapter 61

06:54


Chapter 62
Chapter 62

05:50


Chapter 63
Chapter 63

07:33


Chapter 64
Chapter 64

03:30


Chapter 65
Chapter 65

07:00


Chapter 66
Chapter 66

05:56


Chapter 67
Chapter 67

04:58


Chapter 68
Chapter 68

04:06


Chapter 69
Chapter 69

05:50


Chapter 70
Chapter 70

08:21


Chapter 71
Chapter 71

06:41


Chapter 72
Chapter 72

06:58


Chapter 73
Chapter 73

06:03


Chapter 74
Chapter 74

03:34


Chapter 75
Chapter 75

06:53


Chapter 76
Chapter 76

08:04


Chapter 77
Chapter 77

03:02


Chapter 78
Chapter 78

01:52


Chapter 79
Chapter 79

05:57


Chapter 80
Chapter 80

06:03


Chapter 81
Chapter 81

08:12


Chapter 82
Chapter 82

05:31


Chapter 83
Chapter 83

05:51


Chapter 84
Chapter 84

03:26


Chapter 85
Chapter 85

04:56


Chapter 86
Chapter 86

07:52


Chapter 87
Chapter 87

06:26


Chapter 88
Chapter 88

05:26


Chapter 89
Chapter 89

05:25


Chapter 90
Chapter 90

05:14


Chapter 91
Chapter 91

05:40


Chapter 92
Chapter 92

08:38


Chapter 93
Chapter 93

08:00


Chapter 94
Chapter 94

05:52


Chapter 95
Chapter 95

05:01


Chapter 96
Chapter 96

08:23


Chapter 97
Chapter 97

06:16


Chapter 98
Chapter 98

07:44


Chapter 99
Chapter 99

06:17


Chapter 100
Chapter 100

06:14


Chapter 101
Chapter 101

08:00


Chapter 102
Chapter 102

06:50


Chapter 103
Chapter 103

06:27


Chapter 104
Chapter 104

07:29


Chapter 105
Chapter 105

03:26


Chapter 106
Chapter 106

05:56


Chapter 107
Chapter 107

06:59


Chapter 108
Chapter 108

07:09


Chapter 109
Chapter 109

07:10


Chapter 110
Chapter 110

08:06


Chapter 111
Chapter 111

06:05


Chapter 112
Chapter 112

06:47


Chapter 113
Chapter 113

07:30


Chapter 114
Chapter 114

05:09


Chapter 115
Chapter 115

06:15


Chapter 116
Chapter 116

05:43


Chapter 117
Chapter 117

07:35


Chapter 118
Chapter 118

03:35


Chapter 119
Chapter 119

08:22


Chapter 120
Chapter 120

04:58


Chapter 121
Chapter 121

05:23


Chapter 122
Chapter 122

07:55


Chapter 123
Chapter 123

06:22


Chapter 124
Chapter 124

07:44


Chapter 125
Chapter 125

06:20


Chapter 126
Chapter 126

05:38


Chapter 127
Chapter 127

04:03


Chapter 128
Chapter 128

07:29


Chapter 129
Chapter 129

04:56


Chapter 130
Chapter 130

04:27


Chapter 131
Chapter 131

08:01


Chapter 132
Chapter 132

08:18


Chapter 133
Chapter 133

07:26


Chapter 134
Chapter 134

07:12


Chapter 135
Chapter 135

06:17


Chapter 136
Chapter 136

04:06


Chapter 137
Chapter 137

06:24


Chapter 138
Chapter 138

05:33


Chapter 139
Chapter 139

05:32


Chapter 140
Chapter 140

05:12


Chapter 141
Chapter 141

05:35


Chapter 142
Chapter 142

05:13


Chapter 143
Chapter 143

08:54


Chapter 144
Chapter 144

07:14


Chapter 145
Chapter 145

00:37