Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre says his painkiller addiction was so severe during his MVP years with the Green Bay Packers that it easily could have killed him.
On an episode of his podcast, Favre said he started to abuse painkillers early in his career, as he tried to play through injuries.
“In 1994 was when it started,” Favre said. “When I first realized I liked pain pills was after that Philadelphia game in 1994.”
Favre said he began taking more painkillers than he was supposed to, and it had real effects on his health.
“I was basically taking, in two days, a month’s prescription, which is crazy,” Favre said. “During the ’95 season I had a seizure the night before a game.”
Favre continued using pain pills even after he spent 75 days in an inpatient rehab facility, and eventually he hit rock bottom and had thoughts of suicide.
“I had eight pills in my possession,” Favre said. “Eight pills would not do what I needed it to do. It would give me zero buzz. I was home in Mississippi and I was as low as I possibly could be even though I had won the Super Bowl and won three MVPs in a row. I was low. I said it’s one of two things, I die, or I flush these pills down the toilet. I sat by the toilet for two hours, and eventually, I dumped the pills in the toilet, flushed them and I almost wanted to kill myself because of doing that. I could not believe that I’d actually done that, and I was so mad at myself because now what was I gonna do? It was really not the way you want to come off pain pills because it could kill you. I shook with cold sweats and hot sweats every night at 9 o’clock because every night at 9 o’clock was when I took them. But that was the last time. I was clean. It took me a couple months to where I started getting over, I want these pain pills real bad, that urge.”
Favre says it has now been more than 20 years since he has had any drugs or alcohol.