NFL player Keenan Lewis was reportedly released from the New Orleans Saints earlier this week.
The cornerback, who was reportedly set to make $2.7 million, shared the news on social media with a farewell message posted to Instagram on Friday.
“I would like to thank New Orleans and all my fans. It’s been an awesome journey. I’m glad I had the opportunity to play for the city I grew up in and love. Thank you and see y’all soon hope y’all still cheer for me.”
After Keenan Lewis went through surgeries to repair and address multiple injuries, he only played six games throughout the entire season. In addition to his torn MCL, Keenan also suffered a sports hernia and a torn labrum. According to the NFL website, Keenan was even working through a hip problem in the off-season.
With his recent history of major injuries, it was not very surprising to quite a few fans and critics that the New Orleans Saints decided to release him. When it comes to the cornerback depth within the Saints’ roster, they are still in a solid position — especially with second-year player P.J. Williams and Delvin Breaux ready to start the season off strong.
Where will Keenan Lewis end up next? According to Yahoo! Sports, the 30-year-old cornerback — who is originally from New Orleans — could possibly be a solid fit for the Chicago Bears. Kyle Fuller made waves for the Bears last year, especially by leading the team in interceptions.
Payton on Keenan Lewis: “it’s always a difficult decision…It’s about availability ultimately” #Saints
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) August 21, 2016
— Joel A. Erickson (@JoelAErickson) August 20, 2016
Not sure that I would say I’m stunned by Keenan Lewis being released. The Saints kind of put the writing on the wall this could happen.
— Larry Holder (@LarryHolder) August 20, 2016
Former Saints CB Keenan Lewis is available!!!!???? #FlyEaglesFly
— Ike Reese (@Ike58Reese) August 20, 2016
With Fuller now on the injured list, the Chicago Bears are still going to need to have a solid strategy in place when it comes to effectively defending passes in the upcoming season.
The article posted on Yahoo! Sports — which was originally published by Cover32 — addressed the idea of Keenan Lewis being brought on-board to help fill the void on the Chicago Bears’ roster.
“When it comes to cornerbacks throughout the NFL, Keenan Lewis might just be one of the most underrated names out there. He has always been able to be a productive contributor when he is around the right coaches… He is also very familiar with a 3-4 defense after all the time he has spent in New Orleans and Pittsburgh.”
Keenan reportedly started three seasons consecutively without missing a single game before his career became plagued with injuries in 2015. It was his overall talent and performance that grabbed the New Orleans Saints’ attention in the first place. Lewis first joined the Saints roster back in March of 2013 after agreeing to a five-year contract worth $26 million, with $11 million guaranteed, according to Sports Illustrated.
Keenan Lewis went from playing football at O. Perry Walker High School alongside Mike Wallace, a wide receiver for the Baltimore Ravens, to playing college football at Oregon State. Keenan was selected with the 96th overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers. After the selection, Lewis went on to sign a four-year contract to remain on the Steelers roster.
There are still quite a few Steelers fans that wish Keenan Lewis would find a way to make his way back onto the roster of his very first professional team. Whether Keenan will end up on the Chicago Bears, Pittsburgh Steelers, or a completely different team is yet to be seen. However, with his overall talent and impressive performance when he is healthy and in shape, the sky may still be the limit as to what Keenan Lewis can do and where he can go next in the NFL.
[Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images]