When Texans running back Arian Foster met the media last week, he didn’t have anything to say other than that he’s trying to be the best teammate that he can be.
Foster was more expansive in an interview with Hannah Storm of ESPN, however. Foster discussed the back injury that sent him to injured reserve last year and said that it was a “scary” moment that made him question whether or not he wanted to continue playing.
“Absolutely. Any time an athlete goes through an injury like that — a back, a neck, even knees or hips, something that puts you out for the entire season — you kind of re-evaluate your life,” Foster said. “You see what’s really important. Is getting paralyzed more important than playing with your grand kids when you’re 50, 60 years old. People die on the football field. This is a really brutal sport. Going through an injury like that, being 27 years old, I’m young, still I’m at the prime of my career. Is it worth it to try to come back?”
Foster decided to return for the 2014 season, obviously, and promises to be the best that he can be this season. The injury and a meeting with Hall of Famer Earl Campbell, who uses a wheelchair because of chronic injuries, had an impact, though. Foster says he’ll “walk away” from the game “when I want to” after considering the long-term impact of life in the NFL.