San Francisco 49ers starting tackle Anthony Davis became the fourth member of the football squad to retire this year. Davis, 25, announced his retirement after suffering the first concussion of his career.
Eric Branch of the San Francisco Gate reports that Davis, who endured an injury-plagued season last year, made the decision to heal his body and mind and intimated that after taking “a year or so off,” that he may return to the gridiron.
“This will be a time for me to allow my brain and body a chance to heal. I know many won’t understand my decision. That’s OK.”
Davis’ 2014 saw the number 11 overall pick of the 2010 draft miss significant playing time for the first time in his career. Davis missed a total of five games due to a pulled hamstring and sprained ankle before suffering the concussion. During last year’s off season, Davis required shoulder surgery to repair an injury sustained in the third week of the season. Davis continued to play with the injury.
Davis marks the fourth San Francisco 49er to retire this off season and is just one of the many moving pieces and changing faces that will see next season’s 49er squad looking markedly different than seasons past. Jared Dubin of CBS Sports recalled the staggering list of changes made to the team’s make up that started with the departure of head coach Jim Harbaugh, who after several successful, albeit contentious seasons to take the helm at the University of Michigan. Since then, linebacker Chris Borland, defensive lineman Justin Smith, and linebacker Patrick Willis, retired, each wholly or partially citing health issues as reasons for their departure. In addition, Frank Gore, Mike Lupati, Michael Crabtree, Dan Scuta, Perrish Cox, Chris Culliver, Josh Johnson, and Andy Lee were all either traded or signed elsewhere as free agents.
Davis, while stating that he may return to the football field after a sufficient period of time to heal himself, reiterated that the decision was made in regards to what was best for himself, his well-being, and his family, and encouraged others to use the same criteria when making their own decisions.
“I hope you too have the courage to live your life how you planned it when day dreaming to yourself growing up. Your Life is Your dream and you have the power to control that dream. I’m simply doing what’s best for my body as well as my mental health at this time in my life.”
[Photo courtesy of NFL Films]