Vontae Davis walked into the locker room during halftime of the Buffalo Bills game against the Los Angeles Chargers and took off his pads, but instead of getting ready for the second half of the game the 30-year-old cornerback decided to call it a career and left the team, announcing that he had decided to retire.
Davis released a statement saying that quitting at halftime was not how he "pictured retiring from the NFL" but that following numerous surgeries and injuries during his ten year NFL career, he realized that he "shouldn't be out there anymore."
Davis said that once he got out on the field after not suiting up for the Bills' season opener he "didn't feel right" and decided to go home.
Davis said that he did not want to put his body through another grueling NFL season and that he would rather "walk away healthy than to willfully embrace the warrior mentality and limp away too late." Davis added that he is "at peace with myself and my family" over his decision to retire.
You can read the full statement below:
This isn't how I pictured retiring from the NFL.
But in my 10th NFL season, I have been doing what my body has been programmed to do: Get ready to play on game day. I've endured multiple surgeries and played through many different injuries throughout my career and, over the last few weeks, this was the latest physical challenge.
But today on the field, reality hit me fast and hard: I shouldn't be out there anymore.
I meant no disrespect to my teammates and coaches. But I hold myself to a standard. Mentally, I always expect myself to play at a high level. But physically, I know today that isn't possible, and I had an honest moment with myself. While I was on the field, I just didn't feel right, and I told the coaches, 'I'm not feeling like myself.'
I also wondered: Do I want to keep sacrificing?
And truthfully, I do not because the season is long, and it's more important for me and my family to walk away healthy than to willfully embrace the warrior mentality and limp away too late.
This was an overwhelming decision, but I'm at peace with myself and my family. I choose to be grateful to God for allowing me to play the game that I have loved as a boy until I turned 30 years old. I choose to be grateful to God for being a part of the NFL and making lifelong friends over the last decade. There were roadblocks and pitfalls along the way, but I am grateful to God for all of it because he doesn't promise any of us an easy journey.
Lastly, I am grateful to God for what he has in store for me ahead, in this next chapter of my life.
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