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Father Of Shooter Blames Football For Son’s Actions

While authorities piece together why Phillip Adams killed five people before killing himself on Wednesday, the former cornerback’s father says he knows the reason — football.

Adams played in a total of 78 NFL games for six teams over five seasons, ESPN reports.

His NFL career was plagued with injury, starting in 2010 when he needed screws inserted into his ankle after he suffered a severe injury. A year later with the Raiders, he had two concussions over three games, but ESPN reports he was not eligible for the league’s broad settlement with its players for head-injury testing because he hadn’t retired by 2014.

“I can say he’s a good kid — he was a good kid, and I think the football messed him up,” Alonzo Adams told WCNC-TV. “He didn’t talk much and he didn’t bother nobody.”

Adams’ father told a Charlotte television station that he blamed football for problems that may have led his son to commit Wednesday’s violence, ESPN reports.

His sister, Lauren Adams, also said on Friday the former cornerback’s behavior shifted dramatically in the past couple of years. She said she thinks some of his mental health issues can be traced back to his NFL career, which began in 2010 after he finished playing college football at South Carolina State. His NFL career ended in 2015

Lauren Adams told USA Today her brother didn’t previously show signs of violent behavior and wasn’t a monster but his mental health was degrading fast.

“His mental health degraded fast and terribly bad,’’ Lauren Adams told USA TODAY Sports. “There was usual behavior. I’m not going to get into all that [symptoms]. We definitely did notice signs of mental illness that was extremely concerning, that was not like we had ever seen.”

His sister said as things got progressively worse, Adams neglected his hygiene and withdrew from people — about two weeks ago when family gathered for a funeral, Lauren Adams said her brother talked about having applied for disability benefits with the NFL.

Lauren Adams told USA Today the NFL was trying to “nickel and dime him” and the “whole world was against him.”

“I know he had been applying for disability and he said they were making it hard for him,’’ Lauren Adams said. “And towards the end he felt like they were trying to basically stiff him on money.”

Written by Megan Turner

Meg graduated from the University of Central Florida and writes and tweets about anything related to sports. She replies to comments she shouldn't reply to online and thinks the CFP Rankings are absolutely rigged. Follow her on Twitter at @Megnturner_ and Instagram at @Megnturner.

25 Comments

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  1. Dude, I can’t even blame the parents here.. What do y’all want/expect the parents to say moments after their son committed an incredibly sickening action a mile down the street from where they live? And on top of that had to be evacuated from their house before their son killed himself.

    Football in this case was obviously used as a crutch to cope with the insane amount of trauma and guilt they have. Shit, it’s certainly possible concussions played a role in dude’s mental health decline. And I’m not even trying to defend this guy by any means but damn I feel bad for all involved.

    • Yeah maybe, kinda, sorta, secondarily, but the PRIMARY compassion I have isn’t for the crazed murderer who mowed down little CHILDREN. Children. Right now I don’t give a flip about what this guy went through if he did that. There’s zero excuse. Period. He’s dead and that’s justice for such a satanic act. An entire family is dead for no other reason than this idiot thought obsessively and only about himself for so long that it he finally snapped. They should be the focus of all the heartbreak, not this murderer. We have to much of this ass backwards sympathizing for criminals. Yeah maybe he had issues, and we might care about that in a couple years after burying the family he slaughtered like animals. Until then it’s not worthy of so much attention.

  2. If the article is factual, this young man had a terrible mental breakdown. Whether from drugs, CTE or simply a biological implosion, this was not a rational human being. What he did is beyond horrific, but he wasn’t a terrorist setting out to kill as many people as possible. He wasn’t rational. He was very sick.

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