Former NFL QB Erik Kramer recounts attempted suicide, inspirational recovery


Erik Kramer's life is nearly cheap jerseys back to normal nine months after surviving a suicide attempt.


The former NFL quarterback, who played for the Lions, Bears and Chargers from 1990-99, told his inspirational story of recovery in a Detroit Free Press feature that ran Sunday. In it, he detailed the lows that prompted the August 18 attempt on his own life and the support from family and former teammates who have since helped him reclaim it.


“It was going through my mind (before the attempt) how much I was going to miss Dillon (his son) and my sister and her kids, how much I was going to miss my friends,” Kramer said. “But at the same time, I was in a state of sort of — I don’t know what you call it. Maybe depression or some sort of pain where I was also looking forward to, um, to not having to deal with some of the pain.


"I also had reasoned and realized that there was going to be quite a bit of pain just over the suicide, and mourning because of that. So all that was sort of weighing on me a little bit.”


That night, Kramer was discovered in a Calabasas, Calif., hotel room with a gunshot wound that entered underneath his chin and exited the top of his skull. He was in a medically-induced coma for six weeks with a traumatic brain injury and doctors removed what Kramer estimated as “the front quarter” of the left side of his skull.


Kramer also underwent surgery, repairing his tongue and replacing a portion of his skull, and has spent time in two brain-rehabilitation clinics in the nine months since. He returned home for the first time last month where he has been playing golf and driving a vehicle, resumed dating his former girlfriend and no longer experiences suicidal thoughts, he said.


Kramer, 51, is best known as a former quarterback for the Lions. He was thrust into the lineup in 1991 after Rodney Peete injured his Achilles, and started the remaining eight games. He led the Lions to a 12-4 record and their first playoff victory since the 1950s en route to cheap NFL jerseys the NFC championship game.


He ended up losing the starting job years later and played with the Bears from 1994-98. His best season was in 1995 when he threw for 3,838 yards, 29 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. He finished his career in San Diego in 1999.


After retiring from football, Kramer ended up working with FSN Detroit where he covered the Lions for a period of time.


Kramer said he had been suffering from depression since 1995, when he played for the Bears, and it intensified last summer following a series of personal wholesale NFL jerseys tragedies.


In October 2011, Kramer's eldest son, Griffen, died of a heroin overdose at 18. He lost his mother to uterine cancer in July 2012 and his father became terminally ill with esophageal cancer at the time of Kramer's suicide attempt. He died several weeks later while Kramer was still in the hospital.


Kramer said he sought help in June and confided in friends and former wholesale jerseys teammates, including ex-Lions quarterback Eric Hipple.


At the time of the suicide attempt, Kramer's ex-wife, Marshawn, told reporters she believed Kramer's "severe depression" could be traced to head trauma from his football career. But Kramer told the Free Press cheap NFL jerseys he was never diagnosed with a concussion in his career and, though he's not sure, does not attribute the wholesale NFL jerseys suicide attempt to football.


“I’ve thought about that often, but nothing really stands out as connecting football to the sort of feeling I’ve had with depression,” Kramer said. “It very well may be linked. It doesn’t feel like it to me.”