Default Fans

I felt like the world was against me: Adams

North Melbourne has had a disappointing 2015 on the field so far, but no Kangaroo has suffered more than hard-nosed midfielder Leigh Adams – who suffered yet another concussion while playing for Werribee in the VFL on Sunday.

As part of a feature that aired on Channel 7’s Saturday Night Footy coverage less than 24 hours before the 27-year-old’s latest head-knock, Adams outlined the toll his concussions had taken on his mental health.

“I had three or four [concussions] last year,” Adams said.

“The last NAB Cup game [this year], I went back to Werribee to get a full game in and got clipped by our ruckman, Dan Currie. Over the next couple of weeks it wasn’t getting any better – headaches, short-term memory loss, feeling agitated and really lethargic.

“I started reading a lot of stuff about CTE [Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy] and all the stuff with the gridiron players. That’s probably what got me worried – the long-term effect.”

With the potential long-term implications weighing on his mind, Adams found himself in a dark place.

“It’s really common – one in two people who get concussion will get depression, and I got it pretty bad there for three or four weeks. It didn’t matter what happened, I just felt like the world was against me.

“[I thought,] Poor me… Nah, I don’t want to play anymore. I’ve had enough. I’m just sick of getting knocked around.

“I did need 6-8 weeks to make a clear decision and say this is what I want to do.”

Just when it looked as though the 104-gamer’s luck was about to change – stand-in coach Darren Crocker said Adams had got his “cheekiness” back, was “playing like an AFL player at VFL level” and looked ready to “push for senior selection very shortly” – Adams suffered another setback. It’s unclear when he’ll play again.

If there’s a positive in Adams’s predicament, it’s that his footy career has been put into perspective.

“If I play a poor game and we get beaten by 70 points, the sun still comes up the next day.”

Click here to watch Behind the scenes at Arden Street: Part 1, or here to see Part 2

Need Support? If you know someone who requires urgent assistance or support, please contact:

Lifeline13 11 14

Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800

Mens Line Australia: 1300 78 99 78

Support for AFL Players: If you are a current or past AFL Player and would like to know more about our specialised wellbeing and mental health services please contact the AFL Players’ at or Tel. 03-8651 4300 (Mon to Fri, 9am – 5pm).