Former Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, who played in the NFL for seven seasons before a sudden and unexpected retirement, recently opened up about his decision to leave his football career behind.
Luck began his professional career in 2012 after he was selected as a No.1 pick by the Colts. He quickly became a fan favorite due to his sheer talent on the field; in his rookie year, he broke the NFL’s record for most wins by a No.1 pick rookie quarterback. Despite this fame and glory, he still decided the game was not for him. By 2019, he announced his retirement and retreated to private life.
“I’ve been stuck in this process. I haven’t been able to live the life I want to live. It’s taken the joy out of this game. The only way forward for me is to remove myself from football,” he announced in August of 2019, two weeks before the new season was set to begin. “This is not an easy decision. It’s the hardest decision of my life. But it is the right decision for me.”
Since his announcement, the former quarterback has remained relatively silent about his decision to retire. Now, in an exclusive interview with ESPN’s Seth Wickersham, the former quarterback opened up about his decision to retire.
Andrew Luck admits that the NFL was ‘not the healthiest way to live’
According to the 33-year-old, the stresses of professional athleticism began bleeding into his personal life. “To play quarterback, you’re not allowed to worry about anything except the task at hand,” Luck explained. “And that seeps into other areas of life. It’s not the healthiest way to live.”
In addition, Luck described his fatherly duties as a reason behind his decision to retire. At the time, his wife Nicole was pregnant with their daughter and he felt it was most important to focus on being a dad, rather than putting his entire focus into another season. As time continued, he felt the pressure of the NFL weighing on him, which was something he wanted to change.
“There were some things that when I looked in the mirror, I did not like about myself,” Luck admitted. “I was self-absorbed, withdrawn, in pain, and feeling the pressure.”
Luck, who was a four-time Pro Bowl star, ultimately concluded his seven-year career with an astonishing 171 touchdowns, 2,3671 passing yards, a career completion percentage of 60.8, and a regular-season record of 53-33.
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