Former Green Bay Packers Quarterback Brett Favre was quite the Ironman. He played through injuries for years, and by the end of his career, he was the record holder. Brett Favre’s streak of 297 consecutive games started is the longest all-time. So how did Brett play through all the pain and injuries? Perhaps it had something to do with his opioid addiction.
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Favre shared some details of his Vicodin addiction on his podcast with special guest Dr. Phil:
“So, 1994, was when it started,” Favre responded. “Now I had taken pain pills before that. Not necessarily football injuries. But when I first realized that I liked the pain pills was after that Philadelphia game in ’94. And it wasn’t… the next time I got injured, for example, it may have been three weeks later and I sprained my ankle. I don’t know if it was sprained enough to warrant getting pain pills, but I remembered the effect that it had. And I liked it. And I thought, ‘What the heck? Why not?’”
“You start learning to manipulate the system,” said Favre. “And you become very good at it.”
Favre claims that about every four weeks he had to add another pill just to catch a buzz.
“During the ’95 season I had a seizure the night before a game,” recalled Favre. “An all out seizure.”
He then met with a neurologist who told him that his lack of sleep was short circuiting his system.
However, Favre says “as they dug deeper they found out I had an addiction to pain pills.”
Of course, as Favre says, “Let me tell you. If you take 20 of them, it will work.”
After the season, he says, “I had eight pill in my possession. Eight pills would not do what I wanted it to do. It would give me zero buzz.
“And I was home in Mississippi and I was as low as I possibly could be. Even though I’d won the Super Bowl, won an MVP, actually, won three MVPs in a row.
“During this whole time I hadn’t slept a bit. Like, maybe an hour a night. But I was low. I felt… and I said, it’s one of two things: I die or I flush these pills down the toilet.
“And I contemplated. I sat by the toilet for two hours.
“And eventually I dumped the pills into the toilet. Flushed them. And I almost wanted to kill myself because of doing that. I could not believe that I had actually done that. And I was so mad at myself because now what was I going to do?”
Watch Favre explain below:
Favre is a warrior, but clearly you don’t become the NFL’s ironman without a little help. Luckily for Favre, he found a way out of his addiction.
Hopefully Favre coming clean about his addiction can help someone out with their own.