Retiring Young

Retiring young and wealthy is every man and woman’s dream. When I look around I see millennials retiring or getting out the service at a young age. My mom and dad did 20 plus years in the military. I am sure if my brother could he would definitely still be in the military. With people in my age range working forever just isn’t in the cards. It has been a lot of injuries this year to our young and great players: J.J. Watt, Rob Gronkowski, and now Earl Thomas. These three guys are the game’s best at their position. Something I’ve been thinking about for a while now, are the injuries worth it all?

Earl Thomas tweeted out this after cracking his tibia.

I’ve followed Earl since his time at University of Texas. I remember playing with him on NCAA Football by EA Sports and talking him into staying for his Junior and Senior year. He played cornerback for me his senior year because the team was short. This is all fantasy play but he was a hell of a player in college. So when I saw his tweet it just made me think of that personal moment. Earl is definitely a Hall of Famer for what he did with the Seattle Seahawks. Between him and the rest of the Legion of Boom, Marshawn Lynch, Russell Wilson, and Pete Carroll they really put that team on the map. Like Marshawn Lynch retiring in his prime doesn’t seem like a bad idea. You have already built a platform for yourself to move into your next career. His tweet isn’t the craziest thought in the world even though at that moment it may have seemed that way. People will say he was just emotional at the time because he knew his season was over. I guess we will see how this turns out.

Gronk and J.J. Watt are two of the other greats whose seasons were ended with back injuries. Both of these guys have a history with back issues dating back to college. For J.J. Watt I can see where the hunger to want to come back and attempt to win a championship can eat at you. Watt can easily go into TV/movies and do really well. He was relatively good in the movie Bad Moms.

The good thing about TV/Movies you don’t have to move 300–400 pound guys everyday on the job. If I was Gronk it would be easy for me. First ballot hall of fame, Super Bowl ring, plenty of pro bowls, and G.O.A.T. Tight End. Yes, I said G.O.A.T. Gronk has done it all in his 7-year career but he hasn’t stayed healthy. With all his accolades why keep putting your body through this suffering? He could easily go and do a new version of Girls gone Wild. Haha, he definitely can do much more after football. With Gronk post NFL will come easily for him just like everything on the field.

Football is rough and it can all be over in one play. So my question: are the injuries worth it? I’m still not sure if they are worth it but the time out on the field with your brothers going to war for a common cause is worth every bit of torn cartilage, blood, sweat, and tears. The career threatening injuries year after year can be a troubling. Troubling to a player’s psyche, financially, and to the team. So when thinking about retiring young I don’t think it’s a bad idea at all. Not bad because for most they’re in the can’t go back club as Bomani Jones would say. If the player is in a good position to retire early they should instead of continuing to bang up their body. The NFL is becoming a younger league. Kevin Clark from The Ringer wrote earlier this year that the average NFL age in 2015 was 26.6. The younger the game gets the more you will see these guys retiring early. The hunger just won’t be there anymore.

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