Former Raider Lyle Alzado, who has inoperable brain cancer, believes his condition was caused by steroids he took in his unsuccessful comeback attempt with the Raiders last summer.
In an excerpt of an interview NBC will air Saturday night, Alzado, who retired from the Raiders in 1985, said that he took steroids most of his 14-year career, during which he also played for the Denver Broncos and Cleveland Browns.
"In my comeback attempt I used a certain steroid that caused me to ruin my immune system," Alzado said. The steroid was not named.
Alzado, 42, also said that 75% of the NFL players he came in contact with while he was playing "took some use of enhancement to perform." The NFL banned steroid use in 1989.
Alzado's condition was diagnosed April 5 as primary brain lymphoma. He has completed radiation treatment and is undergoing chemotherapy. A former All-Pro defensive lineman, Alzado has lost 60 pounds and suffers from dizzy spells, slurred speech and loss of coordination on his right side.
Alzado says he hopes others--including junior high school, high school and college students--will be convinced of the dangers of steroids by learning of his situation.