“If I could take that hit back, I would. It’s a guy’s livelihood.” – Jarvis Landry
Being in Miami for the game, the crowd gave the typical “Oooooooo” or “Ouch” after the hit. It was a hit that could be clearly heard throughout Hard Rock Stadium. The jumbotron didn’t show the replay but the hit replayed in my head over and over as Williams laid on the field quietly.
Aaron Williams is a very vocal defender on the Buffalo Bills defense but wouldn’t run his mouth to cause a hit like that. He cares for the franchise and the Buffalo community.
Jarvis Landry is a very physical player but stated to ESPN after the hit, “I just told him to get better. You never want to see that happen to anybody. … If I could take that hit back, I would. It’s a guy’s livelihood.”
Jarvis Landry went on to be fined $24,309 for that hit but it seems as though it could cost Aaron Williams more in the long-term.
Oct 23, 2016; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry (14) checks on the condition of Buffalo Bills strong safety Aaron Williams (23) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
What is in front of Aaron Williams right now is not just a career decision but a life decision.
Stay in football and risk further injury or retire from the game and live his life.
As a fan of the game, it’s tough for one to put a human face behind the helmet. We’re often rooting for our team to do the best regardless of injury. We’ve been breed to want that.
We play fantasy football and get disgruntled with injuries. Most of the time we aren’t upset for the players’ livelihood or the potential long-term effect on their life, we’re upset because we’re going to lose potential fantasy points and now your favorite team may have lower chances of winning.
What’s in front of Aaron Williams is a life choice. A choice that will take time and careful consideration.
Being off the field and seeing the effects of injuries to players and their careers is different than living it. We’re still learning about the effects of hits to the head and neck area and what they can do to a player. This leads me to believe Aaron Williams should retire from the NFL.
Aaron Williams should retire from the NFL because he is only a 26-year-old man with a life in front of him and a family to be with. He is a professional football player but most importantly, he is a human being. The life of a football player after they have had a fruitful career has been seen to be anything but sweet in many circumstances. Lingering injuries and unforeseen effects make everyday life that much harder for a former player to let go of their former job.