We interrupt the ongoing coverage of the playoffs to make note of the possibility that one of the greatest defensive players in NFL history will never play again.
As we’ve learned during the rise of social media (which has coincided with the general decline of society), these things don’t happen accidentally or randomly. This is how people send messages. And the message from Donald could be that he’s done. Or at least that he’s thinking about it.
If Donald eventually decides to retire, it comes only one year after getting a massive new contract that, as written, gives him the ability to walk away without financial consequence after 2023. If he leaves no, he’ll owe the Rams some money, in theory. Donald was serious about retiring without that contract; he supposedly submitted a retirement letter to the Rams days before inking his new deal.
Whether anyone in the organization would be willing to ask him for it is a different question.
Regardless, only two days after the sudden Sean McVay resignation drama ended, there’s a second annual Aaron Donald retirement drama.
Last year, he was motivated by a legitimate desire to get a new deal. This year, it’s unclear what he’s trying to do. Unless he simply realizes that a full-blown rebuild is needed in L.A., and that he’ll be long gone before things turn around.
And maybe that’s the play for Donald. He said he’s a “former NFL D Lineman for the Rams.” Maybe, this year, he wants to be traded to a team that is in better position to contend in 2023.