Chris Conte, who has suffered two concussions this season, says playing in the NFL is worth the risk he takes to his long-term health by doing so.
Conte is a 25-year-old safety for the Chicago Bears.
"Ever since I was a little kid, it's what I've wanted to do," Conte told WBBM Newsradio in Chicago. "In college, I didn't even graduate school because my senior year, I honestly let school be a casualty to that because I knew I had one opportunity to make it to the NFL, and I put everything into that. And I felt school's something I could figure out later.
"As far as after football, who knows. My life will revolve around football to some point, but I'd rather have the experience of playing and, who knows, die 10, 15 years earlier than not be able to play in the NFL and live a long life. It's something I've wanted to do with my life and I wanted to accomplish. And I pretty much set my whole life up to accomplish that goal. So I don't really look toward my life after football because I'll figure things out when I get there and see how I am."
Conte has been unable to play in three games this season and couldn't finish seven of the 12 he's played in.
"As long as I outlive my parents, then we'll be all right," Conte said.