Arian Foster is walking away. The 30-year old running back is retiring, making the announcement on Monday evening through the website UNINTERRUPTED, as injuries finally became too much to overcome.
“There comes a time in every athlete’s career when their ambition and their body are no longer on the same page,” Foster said in the statement. “I’ve reached that point.”
He went on to write:
“I know it’s not commonplace to do it midseason, but my body just can’t take the punishment this game asks for any longer.”
This has always been a big Arian Foster house. When he was right, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone better. He was great to watch and even better to talk to. In an era, when no one will ever say anything about anything, Foster couldn’t have been more interesting. And as he liked to say, if you want to be interesting, be interested. And he was. In plenty of different things.
This is a really different dude. Who came at it in a really different way. Intelligent, willing to challenge the status quo and never afraid to ask why.
And while the guy is one of the most interesting athletes I’ve spoken with over the last 20 years… don’t underrate him as a baller. Went from an undrafted rookie to the rushing champ a year later. He went to four Pro Bowls over a five-year stretch, until injuries took their toll.
And what a series of injuries. This wasn’t a matter of getting a little banged up and not wanting to do the rehab to get right. He had a torn groin and a torn Achilles last year, and then what was described as another lower-body soft tissue issue just recently.
It would’ve been a lot easier to hang on through the end of this season, cashing checks, and standing on the sideline. But instead, he took the classy route.
He’s going out with his faculties and his dignity intact. Well, sort of. Maybe. Check out the end of his statement: “This is a beautifully violent game and the same reason I loved it is why I have to walk away. That bittersweet taste will forever linger with me, but on my next journey, I get to carry those memories with me. Hopefully. Lol”
Classic. Who else would announce their retirement and throw in a joke about “hopefully” having his memory intact in the future? And then chase that with an LOL.
That’s why there was only one Arian Foster. Respect.