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#pounditFriday, December 3, 2021

Everson Griffen explains what led to 2018 mental issues

Everson Griffen shirt

Everson Griffen had frightening mental issues during the 2018 season with the Minnesota Vikings, and is explaining them for the first time.

Griffen’s agent, Brian Murphy, said that the defensive end was not diagnosed with a serious mental health issue. Instead, his erratic actions in 2018 stemmed from “unresolved emotional stress.”

“After five weeks of work and evaluation, the doctors concluded Everson’s erratic behavior resulted from significant unresolved emotional distress, emotional incongruence and a lack of healthy coping skills,” Murphy wrote in an email, via Tom Pelissero of NFL Media. “In short, his unprocessed emotions from a lifetime of really unfortunate and painful experiences — including his mother’s death in October 2012 (from spontaneous coronary artery dissection while visiting Griffen in Minnesota) — finally boiled over the top. As a result, Everson ‘coped’ by relationally detaching and acting out in ways that were very uncharacteristic of his NFL career. While that experience cost him five weeks of the NFL season, it has also changed his life forever in very positive ways.”

Griffen said he lived in a sober house until the end of the 2018 season.

“Nobody knew that I was living in a sober house,” Griffen said. “I lived in the sober house for three months, from October to the end of the season. I was living like I was in college. Had a roommate, had a little bit of clothes. I was going to my meetings. I did the whole nine. That was a part of my recovery. Just to reset. I wanted to reset.”

Griffen has had no incidents since then. The events at that time were scary, but he seems to have gotten a handle on his issues and avoided further trouble. He remains a free agent, though a few teams are said to be interested.

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