After a complicated career that began 17 years ago in Arizona, quarterback Josh McCown is retiring from football, he announced Monday on The Players & # 39; Tribune.
McCown, who turns 40 on July 4, has spent the last two seasons with the New York Jets. He made the decision to retire after consulting with his family in the last few months. His body is fresh – he appeared in only four games last season – but he decided to move on to the next chapter, which could include training or television.
"I guess that proves that you do not always have to choose your own path," McCown wrote. "But in hindsight, I'm proud of my career.I do not fear the companion etiquette.I embrace it, full of strength.
"Because it was a hell of a trip."
Later on Monday, it was announced that McCown would join ESPN as an NFL analyst. He will debut on Wednesday on NFL Live.
"I'm excited to move to broadcasting with ESPN, which will allow me to continue playing with the game I love." I'm looking forward to bringing ESPN viewers unique information. that I have acquired during my career, "he said. .
Jets coach Adam Gase spoke at the start of the offseason, suggesting that McCown could return, but the team chose to have Trevor Siemian take over as Sam Darnold's replacement.
McCown has never been a star player in the league, but his career is extraordinary in itself. He played for eight teams for 17 years, beginning with the Arizona Cardinals in 2002; In fact, he was the last player in the 2002 project to still be active. He spent four seasons with Arizona, then played in Detroit, Oakland and Carolina. He also spent time with Miami and San Francisco, but never played games for them.
After a season out of the NFL, McCown resumed his career with the Chicago Bears (2011 to 2013). He had a fantastic 2013 season in which he made 13 touchdowns and one interception.
He spent most of his career as a quarterback "bridge", moving from one situation to another in reconstruction. That was his role with the Jets; He was also very involved in Darnold's mentorship.
After a career year in 2017, McCown lost his pre-season job to Darnold, a first-round pick. It was not really a competition. McCown spent most of the preseason looking away from the medal while Darnold could clearly see the starting position.
McCown embraced his role as Darnold's mentor. When McCown re-signed the contract last March (a year, $ 10 million), he knew that there was a good chance the team would recruit a quarterback in the first round. The Jets wanted him to come back because of his selfless attitude and his willingness to help young quarters. It was expensive from a financial point of view, but it was "money well spent," said Christopher Johnson, CEO of Jets.
"I think it was great to be able to learn and watch it," said Darnold about McCown, who lived in the same building as the young quarterback and had spent countless hours with him in front of the facility. of the team.
McCown, who has traveled extensively, was forced to make his entry into the game for three straight games when Darnold was foot injured, weeks 10 to 12, but he was not able to resume his form of 2017 He had a lot of trouble, scoring only 54.5% of his passes for 539 yards, with one touchdown and four interceptions. The Jets have lost every third game.
McCown signed with the Jets in 2017 after starting 22 games in the previous three seasons for Tampa Bay and Cleveland. He clinched the starting position for the Jets by default, while junior quarterbacks Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty struggled in the pre-season. McCown eventually set career highs with full passes (267), yards (2,926) and touchdowns (18). The players voted him the most valuable player of his team even though he missed the last three games with a broken hand.
"Regardless of the team I was part of, I tried to serve her to the best of my abilities and I tried to influence my team in a positive way," McCown wrote. . "I hope I did that, and I made sure that when my number was called, I was ready and that I gave it everything I had, every time . "
For his career, McCown has 17,707 yards, 98 touchdowns, 82 interceptions and 79.70 passers.