NY Giants rookie abruptly retires from football after seeing report, saying he values his health

By DANIEL ROTH FOR DAILYMAIL.COM and REUTERS

An undrafted rookie free agent with The New York Giants abruptly announced his retirement from the sport on Sunday.

Jadar Johnson, 22, said he would be stepping away from the game saying he ‘values his health’ and plans to ‘pursue other interests,’ his agent Trey Robinson said.

‘After seriously weighing his options, Jadar has decided to retire from football today to pursue other interests,’ the statement said.

Jadar Johnson (Pictured) , 22, abruptly left the New York Giants and retired from football on Sunday

His agent, Trey Robinson, said that Johnson made the decision saying he 'values his health' and plans to 'pursue other interests'

‘This was not an easy decision for him to make, but it is the right decision for him. He has new ventures that he wants to pursue and he values his health.’

‘Jadar,’ the statement continues, ‘is very grateful to the Giants’ organization for the opportunity they provided him.’

‘At this time, Jadar would like for the media to respect his and his family’s privacy as he closes this chapter in his life.’

It remains unclear why Johnson chose to retire, but the move comes in the wake of a recent report that found that 99 per cent of football players have show signs of having chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

The report in the Journal of the American Medical Association was published last week, and found the condition can also lead to aggression and dementia.

On Thursday, Baltimore Ravens offensive lineman John Urschel announced his retirement from football, though he denied that it had anything to do with the CTE report.

The move comes on the heels of a recent report that suggests that 99 per cent of former players have signs of CTE

‘It wasn’t an easy decision but I believe it was the right one for me. There’s no big story here and I’d appreciate the right to privacy,’ Urschel said.

Urschel, 26, is a Ph.D. candidate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who has been dubbed the ‘smartest player in the National Football League.’

Urschel, who spent all of his three professional seasons with the Ravens, said later in a statement on Twitter that he was excited to be a working full time on his doctorate.

He also said he and his fiancee are expecting their first child in December.

In a 2015 article he wrote in The Players’ Tribune, Urschel said he loved playing football and accepted the risk of brain injury.

NFL said they are committed to working with scientific community in preventing brain injuries in football players

‘Objectively, I shouldn´t. I have a bright career ahead of me in mathematics,’ he wrote, adding that he was not seeking to get rich playing football.

‘The things I love the most in this world (reading math, doing research, playing chess) are very, very inexpensive,’ he wrote.

CTE is a progressive degenerative disease which afflicts the brain of people who have suffered repeated concussions.

In an attempt to reach the Giants for comment, a messaging system said that all facilities were closed over weekend.

A reply for comment by Johnson’s agent was also not immediately offered.

In response to the report, the NFL said in a statement that ‘there are still many unanswered questions relating to the cause, incidence and prevalence of long-term effects of head trauma such as CTE.’

They added: ‘The NFL is committed to supporting scientific research into CTE and advancing progress in the prevention and treatment of head injuries.’

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