Former Stony Brook wide receiver Adrian Coxson retired from professional football on Monday due to continuous symptoms from a concussion he suffered on Aug. 1 during training camp for the Green Bay Packers. Coxson was cut from the Packers’ roster on Aug. 17.
“It’s been recommended to me by two neurologists and two doctors that I retire from football,” Coxson said in a phone interview with the National Football Post “The next hit to my head could possibly kill me or be life damaging. This last one could be life damaging.”
Coxson suffered a severe Grade 3 concussion on the third day of training camp. His retirement announcement cut his professional career down to merely 112 days as an NFL player.
Coxson signed a three-year contract on May 8 after being undrafted, with a $5,000 signing bonus.
“I worked hard all my life and I felt I was achieving my life-long goal,” Coxson said in the interview. “I’m blessed to have my life right now. I’ll see how things work out as far as my health, but my health isn’t in tip-top shape because of this concussion.”
Coxson is not alone in facing the decision of early retirement. Former San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland retired after a very promising rookie season because he feared getting brain damage if he continued to play. Borland finished third among all rookies in tackles and second in interceptions in 2014.
On April 22, 2015, the NFL and its Players Association reached a settlement, which includes monetary awards for ALS, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Dementia and certain cases of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) diagnosed after death. The total cost to the NFL of this settlement was $765 million and will be paid out in full over the next 65 years, according to the settlement’s website.