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Earlier this week, Tennessee Titans wide receiver AJ Brown had a frank discussion about a social media post he posted encouraging people with depression to seek help. Unequivocal and sincere in his rhetoric, Brown revealed that he nearly committed suicide last year during a particularly difficult time when he struggled with his sanity.
In a press conference, Brown explained why he openly shared his post with fans and followers around the world.
âI posted it because I wanted to encourage others to ask for help whenever they were down,â said Brown, who was selected for his first Pro Bowl career in 2019. âI don’t. did not know [or] really consider what depression really wasâ¦ that’s how I grew up. I just brushed off my feelings and it got the better of me.
Friday morning, JMart & Ramon The 104.5 area in Nashville hosted âVoice of the Titansâ and Broadcast Team Vice President Mike Keith on the program. In his 22 years with the team, Keith confessed he’s never been more proud of a Titans player than Brown for bringing to light the issue of mental health in young men, the revering as a hero and a rescuer.
âHe saved someone’s life with that video,â Keith said, âand with the follow-up comments and being as blunt as him. We all know in our own lives people who go through this; the people who have been through this; people who help family members or friends through this. When someone like AJ Brown says something, I promise you there wasâ¦ someone out there who was on the ledge who heard this and stopped and called for help.
Brown grew not only in his abilities on the grill, but also internally as a man capable of dealing with mental health issues. Posting a video disclosing his struggles and offering help to those in distress, Keith says, is something he wouldn’t have done two years ago; rather, it is an indication of the progress it has made in this regard.
âIt’s something that he’s developed, and something that he feels comfortable with in this culture that stretches out there,â Keith said. “I am so proud of AJ Brown, and so grateful that he feels comforted to do it and that he feels compelled to do it this way.”
Morning show co-host Ramon Foster provided his thoughts on Keith’s response and thanked him for voicing his thoughts on the topic on air.
âI almost feel like we can just end the interview now,â Foster said. “Thanks for putting this on the way you did.” People regard football players as their gladiators; they are not supposed to get hurt. It’s the mentality. Watching a guy like AJ Brown expose himself, you must be proud of it.
Conversations like these clearly highlight the impact radio can still have on the audience listening to it in a crowded media landscape. Additionally, it makes people struggling with mental health aware that they are not alone in their struggle and that there are people around the world ready to help them overcome their challenges.
For those with mental health issues or thoughts of suicide, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be contacted at (800) 273-8255. It’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and it’s free.