Randy Gregory breaks silence, speaks about mental health
Cowboys linebacker talks therapy, seeking help for bipolar disorder
OXNARD, Calif. – For the first time since his reinstatement into the NFL, Cowboys linebacker Randy Gregory is talking. The former second-round draft pick out of Nebraska spoke out about his second chance at pro football. Gregory served a one-year ban last season for violating the league’s substance abuse policy and has only played in two of the last 32 regular season games for the Cowboys. Dallas took a big gamble on Randy in the 2015 NFL draft after he tested positive for marijuana at the NFL Combine. Gregory finally chose to address reporters at Cowboys training camp on Monday morning and spoke about his struggles, even going so far as to say that he thought his career might be over.
“I think, at my lowest point, I felt that way, “ confessed Gregory. “Obviously, I knew there was a chance that I would play again if I did the right things. Just looking at everything that was mapped out, as far as what I needed to do and what I had going on in my life at the time, it was really hard for me to say that I thought that I was going to be back.”
The 6-foot-6, 240-pound player then said he got around the right people. “Therapy has always helped. Just being consistent with that, a healthy dose of medication, and then just being able to realize what I have on my plate, my priorities, and being happy, not only with what I’m doing, but with myself internally has been the biggest help, I think.”
Gregory used marijuana to self-medicate himself in his struggles with anxiety, which was later diagnosed as bipolar disorder. Gregory did not discuss that specifically.
“I just would like everybody to realize that there is more to it and that there is a stigma behind it, and it’s not just somebody walking around carelessly doing what they want, “ explained Gregory. “There’s obviously a mental aspect to it that plays a big part in it for me that I’ve had to try and figure out.”
Gregory then admitted he had to take a more serious approach to his therapy. “The more people around me that understood what I was going through mentally, I think those things made it a lot easier for me to get right.”
Now that Gregory has learned to deal with his mental issues, the next step for him is to get back in the game. The Cowboys are hoping that he will play in their season opener at Carolina on Sunday, Sept. 9.