Chris Borland surprised the football world when he announced his retirement in March on the heels of a promising rookie campaign. Perhaps even more surprising was that he agreed to return three-quarters of his signing bonus to the 49ers, a sum of over $460,000. Speaking at the 2015 Legends of Wisconsin Golf Classic last week, Borland was asked about his decisions and emphasized that his choice to retire was motivated by health concerns. As Jeff Potrykus of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes, Borland said he decided to walk away based on “a combination of my own experience, along with a lot of data that is out there regarding long-term health effects of head injuries. And I play a position and a style of play where I was susceptible to the worst of it. I played a physical brand of football and played through some things where it makes sense for me.”
When asked about why he returned a large portion of the signing bonus, Borland said simply, “I signed a contract. I was living by the contract.” As for his future plans, Borland said a trip to Europe is next on his agenda, but otherwise, “I’ve got a few pretty decent options. I’m not going to hurry up and start a career. I’m going to take my time.”
Now for a few more links from around the league:
- We cited this mailbag from ESPN.com’s Mike Triplett yesterday to provide a surprising stat on Drew Brees, but it also made sense to pass along Triplett’s thoughts on the Saints‘ cornerback situation. Triplett writes that the top four spots are probably reserved for Keenan Lewis, Brandon Browner, P.J. Williams, and Damian Swann. After that, he sees Delvin Breaux and Stanley Jean-Baptiste as the frontrunners for what may be the final two cornerback openings on the roster, leaving veterans Kyle Wilson, Terrence Frederick, and Brian Dixon on the outside.
- Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com thinks Marcus Mariota is determined to be present at Titans training camp, though it is possible his agents could convince him to stay away. The holdup in the team’s contract negotiations with its potential quarterback of the future is offset language, and Kuharsky writes that GM Ruston Webster simply needs to get Mariota to camp, either by convincing him the Titans are not going to move off their offset philosophy or by coming off their offset philosophy.
- Mary Kay Cabot of The Cleveland Plain Dealer believes the Browns are pretty pleased with their current tight end situation, and she does not foresee the team adding to its TE corps. She also says Cleveland is hopeful that one of its talented young running backs will ultimately separate himself from the pack, but that the Browns will distribute the rushing duties fairly evenly to open the season.
- Mike Klis of 9News.com examines the impact newly-acquired safety Darian Stewart will have on the Broncos and whether the former Ram and Raven will represent an upgrade over Rahim Moore, who departed in free agency.