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President Barack Obama Concerned about Football Safety

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- In an interview that will appear in the Feb. 11 issue of The New Republic, President Barack Obama stressed his concern about player safety in football.

Obama told The New Republic that if he had a son, he'd think long and hard about letting his son play football due to the amount of violence in the game.

"They can make some of these decisions on their own, and most of them are well-compensated for the violence they do to their bodies," Obama said of NFL players. "You read some of these stories about college players who undergo some of these same problems with concussions and so forth and then have nothing to fall back on. That's something that I'd like to see the NCAA think about."

Obama also said that if the NFL chooses to change the way the game is played, it might make the game, "a bit less exciting" but will help the players’ safety.

In wake of the interview, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello responded: "We have no higher priority than player health and safety at all levels of the game."

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