NFL offensive lineman Eugene Monroe unexpectedly announced his retirement from the NFL today, citing his fear of repeated collisions resulting in the brain disease CTE.
Here's the striking portion of his announcement in The Players' Tribune.
"The last 18 years have been full of traumatic injuries to both my head and my body. I’m not complaining, just stating a fact. Has the damage to my brain already been done? Do I have CTE? I hope I don’t, but over 90% of the brains of former NFL players that have been examined showed signs of the disease. I am terrified."
Studies suggest that football players are at an elevated risk to develop CTE due to frequent blows to the head from playing.
He plans to immediately set up doctor appointments to have his brain and body scanned, as well as receive mental health assessments.
Injuries sidelined him for half of Baltimore's last 34 games and he was released on the final day of minicamp earlier this year.
As Deadspin points out, Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson walked away with fear of concussions and growing annoyance with all of the painkillers the physical game forced him to take. Former Vikings safety Husain Abdullah retired after his fifth concussion and Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo and Jets All-Pro offensive lineman D'Brickashaw Ferguson also retired at 29 and 32, respectively.