With more information in recent years linking brain damage (chronic traumatic encephalopathy) with football players, longtime sports broadcaster Bob Costas said the sport could wither away.
"The reality is that this game destroys people's brains," Costas said during a roundtable discussion at the University of Maryland Nov. 7.
Football Night in America host said if he had a young child he would not let them play football.
"The day-to-day issues, as serious as they may be, they may come and go," Costas said. "But you cannot change the nature of the game. I certainly would not let, if I had an athletically gifted 12- or 13-year-old son, I would not let him play football."
Former NFL and Maryland Terps running back LaMont Jordan, weighing in on the subject on
Glenn Clark Radio
Nov. 9, wouldn't go that far but said he does have a certain method in which he would teach his son how to play the game.
"As a kid, I grew up playing the game of football just playing around in the neighborhood," said Jordan, who played at Maryland from 1997-2000 and is the program's leader in career rushing yards. "When you play [without pads], to me, that is the No. 1 way that teaches you how to play the game of football and keep your head out of it.
"I'm going to let him play football outside with his friends without a helmet so that he can learn how to keep his head out of the game."
Jordan added that things need to be done differently at the youth levels of football.
"It's a travesty what's happening at the youth level," he said. "I'm watching coaches care more about coaching plays and coaching good athletes, and they're not spending enough time teaching the game and proper technique, so I think it all starts at the youth level.
"If you teach it right at the youth level you can take away some of the big hits. And if you [take away those hits], now you're taking away some of the damage to the brain."
Jordan, who played nine seasons in the NFL, said not everyone should be playing the physical sport.
"The game of football is not for everybody," Jordan said. "Just because you have size and you run fast and have some athleticism, that doesn't make you a football player."
For more from Jordan, listen to the full interview here: