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(Oct. 20, 2018 - Source: Andy Lyons/Getty Images North America)

Andrew Luck’s retirement for health reasons should be celebrated, not criticized

Andrew Luck’s retirement from the NFL has brought out the worst in sports fans and NFL pundits. The former NFL quarterback retired for completely honest reasons. He is in pain on a constant basis from years of punishment. Luck is only 29-years old and further NFL seasons could put him in worse off health conditions by the time he is 40.

In his retirement press conference, Luck said: “I’m in pain; I’m still in pain, it’s been four years of this pain, rehab cycle. It’s a myriad of issues — calf strain, posterior ankle impingement, high ankle sprain. Part of my journey going forward will be figuring out how to feel better.”

Luck has given his life to the gridiron. He has played since being a child, which means Luck has been taking hits from defenses since he was around five- or six-years old.

Getting hit by a small car

It is claimed that getting hit by an NFL linebacker at full speed is equal to getting hit by a small car. Can the average NFL fan or pundit even comprehend being hit over and over again by another player intent on taking off their heads?

Sure, Luck has been paid handsomely during his career. But that is no reason for him to stay on the gridiron. So, why are fans and pundits so outraged he has retired?

There is a belief amongst sports fans that they own an athlete. This is often seen by fans booing the players they previously cheered when they return for games. LeBron James has booed by Cleveland Cavaliers fans during his time with the Miami Heat only to be welcomed back with open arms when he returned.

Only a select few understand Luck’s decision

The saddest part about Luck’s retirement is the Indianapolis Colts’ own fans booed him for the announcement. Luck was unmercifully booed following his announcement by Indianapolis Colts fans during the team’s preseason game against the Chicago Bears.

While fellow NFL players such as Tom Brady have backed Luck, many of the people that previously supported Luck do not. These football fans are happy for Luck to kill himself for their enjoyment, which is not only selfish, but truly a poor example of being human beings. Even members of the media criticized Luck’s retirement. That is incredibly laughable as many of the critics have never played a down of football outside of the high school level.

Fox Sports commentator Dan Gottlieb called Luck’s retirement the “most Millennial thing ever”. It shows just how out of touch Gottlieb, NFL fans, and others are that they use “Millennial” as an insult to people who see the world differently.

Gottlieb’s ignorance of the pressure and physical harm that comes with being an NFL player was magnified by former Dallas Cowboy quarterback Troy Aikman.

The former Super Bowl winner shot back at Gottlieb writing: “That’s total bull**** Doug. What qualifies you to decide how someone should live their life? So, you’re now the authority on what motivates Andrew Luck? And if his decisions don’t fit into what you think is best for him then you rip him? Guess that keeps you employed … Nice.”

Of course, Gottlieb and others who have made careers of hot-takes, have never played NFL football. Luck’s retirement to preserve his health and future are more important than throwing touchdown passes. With a wife and child, Luck’s future is about being there for his family and living the healthiest life possible. Sorry Colts fans, but that is far more important than a Super Bowl ring and your entertainment.

About Drew Farmer

Drew Farmer
Drew’s work has appeared on a variety of sports and travel websites. He is also a published author having written the sports/travel book Soccer Travels.

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