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Former Bucs’ running back Charlie Garner struggles in post-career

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Charlie Garner, a former NFL running back who finished his career with the Tampa Bay Bucs, is strugging with brain trauma, he says.

Garner says he suffered at least 12 concussions a year while playing, and doctors believe he is dealing with the early stages of the Cronric Traumatic Encephalopathy.

“I don’t have all of my faculties anymore,” Garner told the Sporting News. “I can’t remember things. When I go to the mall or grocery store, I have to take one of my kids with me to remember where the car is parked. I have trouble remembering converations I had five minutes ago. Bright lights bother me. I just don’e feel right all of the time.”

Garner, 45, gained 7,097 yards in the NFL. He spent 2004 with the Bucs, playing in three games and gaining 111 yards before he was hurt.

“Footbakk gave me a good lifestyle for me and my family, Garner said. “But I might end up paying a big price for it.”

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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