WEATHER AUTHORITY : Heat Advisory View Alerts

Vontae Davis: 'I had more of an out-of-body, spiritual moment'

He was leaving $5 million on the table, and the game wasn't even over yet. But for cornerback Vontae Davis, ...

Posted: Oct 2, 2018 9:32 PM
Updated: Oct 2, 2018 9:32 PM

He was leaving $5 million on the table, and the game wasn't even over yet. But for cornerback Vontae Davis, none of that mattered. He was done.

Davis, 30, sent shockwaves through the NFL -- and his own locker room -- when he abruptly ended his career on September 16, retiring at halftime of the Buffalo Bills' game against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Football (American)

NFL

Sports and recreation

Sports organizations and teams

"Never have seen it ever -- Pop Warner, high school, college, pros -- never heard of it, never seen it," Bills linebacker Lorenzo Alexander said after the game. "It's just completely disrespectful to his teammates."

In an interview on camera with CNN's Brooke Baldwin, Davis responded to Alexander's comments.

"I come from very humble beginnings," Davis said. "My mother was addicted to drugs, my father an alcoholic. I grew up in some very traumatic situations. I witnessed my father being shot multiple times by his brother. And when you come out of situations like that, you're just not considered a quitter.

"I don't think I quit. I think I feel that, as I walk away from a game that no longer serves me mentally, physically, and emotionally. That's what I would tell people who say I quit. Most people don't know who I am as a person or what I've been through to achieve the success I have."

Davis' older brother, Washington tight end Vernon Davis, took to Instagram a couple of days later after the news, writing, "It's hard to see him retire, as I thought he would be in this league longer than me. I feel like I retired because we're so close and I look at him as he's my son even though he's my younger brother."

READ: Meet the NFL's Canadian renaissance man

'I no longer belong on a football field'

Davis described the exact point of when he decided to hang it up.

"I had more of an out-of-body, spiritual moment, and my intuition was telling me that football was no longer for me," Davis said.

"It was very emotional, and I was very vulnerable in that situation to deal with -- with playing the game for so long. It was very emotional for me. I had to come to the conclusion that football was no longer for me, and that was really hard to deal with at the moment."

Before signing a one-year deal with the Bills for this season, Davis, a two-time Pro Bowler who was a first-round pick in 2009, had played for the Miami Dolphins and Indianapolis Colts.

But in the midst of Buffalo's game against the Chargers in Week 2, Davis, in his 10th NFL season, said he no longer felt like he belonged in that environment anymore.

"In that moment, the warrior mentality that I had popped," Davis explained. "I came to the conclusion that I no longer belong on a football field."

When he made his decision, Davis texted his wife, saying simply he was done.

"She's been around me her whole life," Davis said. "It was also emotional for her. This was a situation I've never been in, and my intuition moved me in that way.

"That's the decision I agreed upon with myself and I didn't really expect nobody to understand, and it was a decision I personally made with myself."

Davis said he had some of his teammates at his house afterward, explaining his decision to them. He said those who were there supported him.

READ: The streak is over: Cleveland Browns

'It was never about the money'

Part of the choice to retire was physical, as Davis cited the issue of players dealing with the potential of brain injuries, including chronic traumatic encephalopathy (commonly known as CTE).

"All of that stuff goes into consideration," Davis said. "I no longer wanted to sacrifice my body where it didn't benefit me moving forward."

Davis said he's "pretty sure" he'll miss the game, but he has future plans, including opening a wellness center in Miami. He's working on a children's book, which is about how he overcame obstacles while growing up. He and his wife also plan on starting a family.

As to putting his body ahead of his $5 million salary?

"It was never about the money," he said. "I made a decision that was concerning my health moving forward after the game of football. In today's society, I think a lot of people go to work every day to collect a check.

"I'm not that type of person. I did what was best for me and my health moving forward."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 66646

Reported Deaths: 1874
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds5599118
DeSoto363230
Harrison249836
Madison241464
Rankin227633
Jackson226942
Jones188558
Forrest177856
Washington164641
Lee142839
Lauderdale140792
Neshoba128592
Lamar120214
Oktibbeha111838
Bolivar110834
Warren108932
Lowndes107437
Panola105412
Sunflower102425
Scott99820
Lafayette96416
Copiah95028
Pike92836
Leflore92562
Holmes89048
Grenada84321
Yazoo82912
Pontotoc8218
Lincoln80941
Simpson79530
Leake78625
Monroe77853
Wayne76421
Coahoma74312
Tate72028
Marshall6889
Marion65720
Union62716
Winston62016
Adams61725
Covington61213
George5595
Newton54211
Pearl River54038
Tallahatchie53010
Attala52125
Walthall49819
Chickasaw45920
Noxubee45311
Alcorn4195
Calhoun4179
Prentiss41710
Tishomingo4095
Claiborne40413
Smith40413
Clay39413
Hancock38814
Jasper3879
Tippah36013
Itawamba35810
Tunica3337
Clarke32625
Montgomery3213
Lawrence3197
Yalobusha31310
Humphreys29111
Quitman2621
Carroll26111
Greene24111
Kemper23214
Perry2327
Jefferson Davis2316
Amite2306
Webster22812
Wilkinson20513
Sharkey1975
Jefferson1957
Stone1944
Benton1431
Choctaw1334
Franklin1242
Issaquena261
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 94827

Reported Deaths: 1674
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson12969243
Mobile9836206
Montgomery6609148
Madison531433
Tuscaloosa419073
Unassigned356061
Baldwin350224
Shelby326035
Marshall313035
Lee266045
Morgan236918
Etowah210431
DeKalb179813
Calhoun176113
Elmore171538
Walker152064
Houston138612
Russell13582
St. Clair132817
Dallas131823
Limestone131813
Franklin127020
Cullman122012
Colbert117113
Lauderdale115717
Autauga108621
Escambia107516
Talladega100913
Jackson9684
Tallapoosa85479
Chambers84038
Dale82723
Blount7884
Chilton7886
Butler75836
Coffee7566
Covington73420
Pike7037
Clarke6629
Barbour5735
Lowndes57124
Marion57024
Marengo55315
Hale47326
Bullock46311
Winston45011
Perry4404
Bibb4265
Wilcox42610
Monroe4194
Randolph39610
Pickens3929
Conecuh38810
Washington38612
Sumter36018
Lawrence3481
Macon33414
Crenshaw3143
Choctaw28112
Cherokee2707
Henry2593
Geneva2570
Clay2525
Greene25011
Lamar2202
Fayette2045
Cleburne1261
Coosa1012
Out of AL00
Tupelo
Broken Clouds
94° wxIcon
Hi: 98° Lo: 75°
Feels Like: 98°
Columbus
Clear
91° wxIcon
Hi: 95° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 102°
Oxford
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 95° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 95°
Starkville
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 93° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 95°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather