Philadelphia Eagles' Brandon Brooks diagnosed with 'anxiety condition'

ByTim McManus ESPN logo
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Brandon Brooks speaks during a news conference at the Philadelphia Eagles NFL football practice facility, Friday, March 11, 2016.

PHILADELPHIA -- Philadelphia Eagles starting right guard Brandon Brooks revealed on Wednesday that he was recently diagnosed with an "anxiety condition."

Brooks missed two of the last three games as a result of an illness that in each instance set in the morning of the game.

"What I mean by anxiety condition, not nervousness or fear of the game," he said at his locker stall following Wednesday's practice. "I have like an obsession with the game. It's an unhealthy obsession right now, and I'm working with team doctors and things to get everything straightened out and getting the help that I needed."

Brooks said that he sought help after realizing that he "couldn't defeat it myself" following his first absence on Monday, November 28th against the Green Bay Packers.

He was diagnosed with anxiety and started taking medication then. It takes time for it to build up in the system, he explained, hence why he still fell ill last week before the Washington Redskins game. He said the illness hasn't been exclusive to game days; it's just that other bouts have gone unnoticed.

Brooks, who signed a five-year, $40 million contract with the Eagles in free agency this past offseason, missed two games with similar symptoms while a member of the Houston Texans. He wakes up sick around four or five in the morning, he says, and vomits uncontrollably. It lasts a full 24 hours.

"For the longest [time], I thought it was an ulcer, I thought it was something physical in my stomach," said Brooks, when asked why he is just now having this diagnosed. "So I didn't know it could possibly be something else. I would get sick once, maybe twice a year."

Brooks told his teammates immediately, and says they have "rallied around me." He mentioned talking with a psychologist or psychiatrist as possible method to go along with taking medication.

"Well one, I'm an honest guy, and I'm going to tell you what's going on," he said, when asked why he has decided to go public with what is ailing him. "Two, it's nothing I'm ashamed of. I'll get the help that I need and life will go on. I'll be fine, career will be fine. I'm am concerned about it obviously, but I'm not 'woe is me' at this point."

Brooks added that he hopes he can help others that are fighting through something similar.

"I think I'll come out better from this, come out a better person."