Sports

Hall of Famer Forrest Gregg battling Parkinson’s

Pro Football Hall of Famer Forrest Gregg, a man celebrated for his durability on the football field, is facing a difficult challenge away from the gridiron.

Nicknamed “Iron Man” for playing in a then-record 188 consecutive NFL games during his career with the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys, Gregg said he’s been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

Although the cause of the debilitating neurological disorder is unknown, Gregg, his family and his neurologist say his disease might be related to numerous concussions he suffered during his playing career in the 1950s at Southern Methodist University and from 1956-71 in the NFL.

Gregg beat melanoma in 1976 and colon cancer in 2001.

“This is not my first experience with a life-threatening disease,” he said. “So, I’ve got another battle to fight.”

The 78-year-old Gregg’s symptoms include hand tremors, a stooped posture, shortened stride and softened voice.

“I’d like to stop it there if I could,” he said.

A guard and tackle who was a six-time All-Pro and nine-time Pro Bowler, Gregg is one of three NFL players to win a half-dozen NFL championships, including the first two Super Bowls with the Packers. Gregg finished his career with another Super Bowl title with the Cowboys in 1971.

He went on to coach the Bengals, Browns and Packers, compiling a record of 75-85-1. He led Cincinnati to the Super Bowl after the 1981 season, where the Bengals lost to San Francisco, 26-21.

EXTRA POINTS

Eagles quarterback Michael Vick missed practice because of broken ribs, and it was uncertain whether he will play against the Giants on Sunday night. ... Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel had surgery on his injured throwing hand, but coach Todd Haley hoped that Cassel will be back this season. Tyler Palko is expected to start Monday at New England. ... The Chargers placed Pro Bowl left guard Kris Dielman on the season-ending injured reserve list because of the lingering effects of a concussion sustained Oct. 23 at the New York Jets. ... Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb practiced on a limited basis, testing his injured right foot with some football moves for the first time since he was hurt three games ago. ... The Vikings placed cornerback Antoine Winfield (broken clavicle) on injured reserve and signed veteran cornerback Benny Sapp. ... Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson missed practice because of a sore left shoulder. ... The Bears re-signed safety Winston Venable, an undrafted rookie out of Boise State, and placed safety Anthony Walters on injured reserve with a hamstring injury. ... The Panthers placed running back Mike Goodson (hamstring) on injured reserve. ... A trial for Bengals cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones is expected to get pushed back. He is scheduled to have a non-jury trial today in Cincinnati. He’s charged with misdemeanor counts of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest for an incident at a Cincinnati bar in July.

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