Everson Griffen On Free Agency, 2018 Turmoil

Everson Griffen was going through a tough time in 2018. The Vikings pass-rusher missed five games as he dealt with personal issues following some concerning incidents, and he opened up about the experience, as well as his current free agency, for the first time during a recent interview with Tom Pelissero of NFL.com.

Nobody knew that I was living in a sober house,” Griffen told Pelissero. “I lived in the sober house for three months, from October to the end of the (2018) season. I was living like I was in college. Had a roommate, had a little bit of clothes. I was going to my meetings. I did the whole nine. That was a part of my recovery. Just to reset. I wanted to reset.” 

Griffen credited the period for putting him in a better space today, and said it wouldn’t be an issue moving forward. “I’m happy that 2018 happened, because I wouldn’t be sitting here today, being able to tell my story and showing teams that I am strong, I am healthy and there’s nothing really that you have to worry about, because I’m doing all the right things. There’s nothing I’m doing behind the scenes that they should be worried about. I’m doing everything possible to make sure that 2018 doesn’t happen again. And it will not happen,” he explained.

Griffen’s agent also told Pelissero that serious mental health issues like bipolar disorder had been ruled out during his evaluations, and that his “erratic behavior resulted from significant unresolved emotional distress,” such as the sudden death of his mother a handful of years ago. As for his free agency, the 32-year-old intimated the inability to conduct full evaluations as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic had impacted his market.

This process, for me, has taken a lot of patience, a lot of self-reflection, too,” Griffen said. “It’s like, why haven’t (more) teams been interested? And the reason why is because they don’t know Everson.” While Griffen and his agent had publicly announced he wouldn’t be returning to the Vikings, Griffen told Pelissero he would “never say never” on a potential return.

Griffen has been with the Vikings ever since they drafted him in the fourth-round back in 2010. The last we heard a couple of weeks ago there was mutual interest with the Seahawks, and it sounds like he could be a top option for them if they don’t bring back Jadeveon Clowney. The USC product played in 15 games last year, racking up eight sacks. Often one of the league’s better pass-rushers, he’s made the Pro Bowl in four of the last five seasons.

Griffen says he isn’t in any rush to sign, and will take his time to find the right situation. He told Pelissero he still speaks with a team of therapists, clinical psychologists, and a life coach daily, and that he will be an open book for inquiring teams. Here’s to hoping that Griffen continues to do well off the field no matter where he’s suiting up in 2020.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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6 comments on “Everson Griffen On Free Agency, 2018 Turmoil

  1. Thronson5

    Good for him, for speaking up about his personal issues for getting them under control. That’s awesome. People forget that these athletes are human, they bash them for going through personal issues like they are saints when in fact majority of people go through some sort of personal issue wether it’s depression, divorce, legal issues, trying to stay sober, death to a close friend or family member that eats at them. Nobody is perfect, everyone had their own demons they battle so I’m glad to hear he seems to have his under control for now and hopefully for good. I pray the man stays on that path and finds a new home, definitely a fan of him as a player and support the man he is as well.

    • JoeBrady

      Yup, that could be any one of us, especially me. Good job speaking out.

      And I suspect the Raiders could use him, depending on what type of role he wanted to play.

  2. halofanatic

    I would think that the Broncos should be interested. With Bradley Chubb coming back from a serious injury, it’s unclear how he’ll respond and will he be the same player?

    Based on the article, it sounds like Griffin is in a lot better place, personally and that’s awesome news for him. Kind of reminds me of when Demarcus Ware took a young Von Miller under his wing. Obviously, Griffin Everson is an early 30’s adult, opposed to a mid 20’s Von Miller.

    Situation or age similarities is irrelevant as it seems, at least at first glance, that both parties can benefit from each other.

  3. compassrose

    See you in a Seattle uni. Great team great fans. You are more than welcome here.

    • cka2nd

      I think going to Seattle would burn Vikings fans more than going to any other team than Green Bay.

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