Ex-Alabama LB Anders: Football 'way more dangerous' than MMA

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Former Alabama linebacker and current UFC middleweight Eryk Anders believes he wound up in the safer sport when he transitioned from football to mixed martial arts.

"Football is way more dangerous than MMA," Anders said Monday on The MMA Hour, according to Alexander K. Lee of MMAFighting.com. "Even if you get knocked out in MMA, it's just one time, then you get up, you take a couple of months off, let your body heal. In football, you may not get knocked out, but you're constantly getting hit, getting hit, getting hit, especially if you play that D-line, linebacker, running back, offensive line position. Every play it's a collision and your body doesn't appreciate that."

Anders played a prominent role with the Crimson Tide throughout his college football career, starting on their 2009-10 BCS national championship team. His pro career fizzled out, though, leading him to turn to the world of athletic combat.

"Football, it's a collision every play," the 30-year-old said. "Car wreck, every play. But now my body, I don't have to lift all those weights and eat all that food, it's kind of the opposite. When I was in college, my back always hurt, my knees always hurt from bearing all the weight and hits and whatnot, but now that I'm doing MMA, my body's never felt better. I'm walking around at more of a natural weight, my diet's much better, and the way we train I can go forever if I wanted to."

Anders holds a 10-0 professional fighting record and is gearing up for UFC Fight Night 125 on Feb. 3, where he'll be in the main event against Lyoto Machida.

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