Unemployed linebacker Rolando McClain walked away from the NFL prior to his 24th birthday, despite getting a second chance after a troubled career with the Oakland Raiders.
Despite being offered a chance to make the Baltimore Ravens this summer, McClain is doing without football, he said in an ESPN The Magazine profile this week, because he was filled with rage and anger.
"I felt like Aaron Hernandez, like I just wanted to kill somebody," McClain said.
The former No. 8 overall pick in the draft signed a $23 million deal with the Raiders out of Alabama and immediately became a target for friends and family members seeking his money.
McClain also soon after became involved in several off-field incidents that sent his life spiraling downward. He was arrested in December 2011 in a shooting and just this January was arrested for illegally tinted car windows and providing false identity to police. McClain also was arrested 10 days after signing with the Ravens for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
His only option was leaving the game, McClain told ESPN.
"[I] would have ended up locked in a cage like an animal," he said. "That had to be the only outcome."
His upbringing exposed McClain to violence, and he has considered therapy but hasn't completely figured out why he is this way.
"I don't know if I'm ready to know, man, why I was so angry," he said.
Despite this, McClain said he's considering trying to return to the NFL, perhaps as soon as the 2014 NFL season.
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