Retirement Takes on a Whole New Meaning


Retirement Takes on a Whole New Meaning

~ Amy Lignor


For most of us common folk, we understand that heading toward retirement means working a whole lot and saving up, hoping beyond hope that we will be able to retire on a nest egg before cars are flying through the sky and not clogging a turnpike. However, when you look at the NFL, it seems their definition of retirement is a little different.


images (71)There are names that many believe should have announced their retirement this off-season. Some think Brady should walk; not because he’s done, just because if he wins any more rings it will be hard to hold a script in his hand when he moves on in life and begins auditioning for movie roles. Peyton Manning is another. And not because he’s a bad player – he’s one of the best – after all, he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame just as quickly and easily as butter melts on a warm croissant. But at his age, with his health difficulties and diminishing level of play, and leading a team that counts on him more than anyone else – retirement seems to be the path he should take before he ends up in the hospital with a broken neck.

But this off-season retirement is all about, apparently, getting out before you’re thirty and still healthy enough; where chiropractic visits aren’t part of the daily routine. Right after turning only twenty-seven, Jason Worilds decided that he would leave the NFL and the Steelers behind. And this is a young man who posted 7 ½ sacks, logged in two fumble recoveries and a forced fumble. He is on the up-and-comer list with most experts, yet he’s moving on.


This is not the first surprise the NFL has encountered. One of the largest that came literally out of the blue was a twenty-nine-year-old by the name of Patrick Willis. Most people know that name. As an All-Pro linebacker with the 49ers, he walked away before the 2015 season after eight years stating that it would be “wrong to collect a paycheck when his feet were finished” knowing that he wasn’t as good as he first was. Yup…honesty. Go figure. The sad part about this one, however, is looking at the 49ers now. A coach with no name, a QB that is being pummeled by the press even though in his first year he brought them straight to the Super Bowl, and having lost a running back that is beyond necessary – the 49ers need people like Willis – bad feet or not.


Jake Locker is a name that also is known – and most likely would have been known a whole heck of a lot more if he hadn’t called it quits and walked away from the gridiron when he was only twenty-six.


As we look at the major contracts that have been handed out just recently, it seems unfathomable that players are moving on at such a young age when many who are far older and far longer into their careers have signed for major money this off-season – receiving contracts that could allow a small country of people to retire.


But for those who wish to not be charlatans and not take money when they know that the peak of their career has come and gone, there is much good to be said about them. And let’s face it, the way last season went with the really bad headlines posted by many players off the field instead of on, the ones doing the right thing deserve a pat on the back…and a job that pays well.

Source:  Sportsmans Lifestyle