Cliff Avril says he wants to keep playing despite neck injury

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Seahawks defensive end Cliff Avril isn’t willing to call in a career just yet.

Avril injured his neck in an October win over the Indianapolis Colts and had surgery in November to address disc issues in his neck. He was injured when the back of Jacoby Brissett‘s foot caught him in the chin as he was diving to tackle the Colts’ quarterback. The injury led to Avril being placed on injured reserve with his ability to play the game moving forward being called into serious question.

Nevertheless, Avril said he wants to keep playing football if he’s able to do so.

“I believe so,” Avril said in an interview with Steve Wyche of the NFL Network. “Right now it’s all about recovery. I had surgery. I’m in the process of recovering. It’s a long process, a long journey. When I get to the end of that, then I’ll figure out what’s next.

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said Avril – along with safety Kam Chancellor – are going to have a hard time playing again due to the injuries they sustained this season. Even if Avril can play physically, there’s a high likelihood it wouldn’t be with Seattle. He’s set to enter the final year of his contract with the team and the Seahawks would save $7.5 million against the salary cap by electing to move on.

Given the significant changes to the coaching staff already and expected turn over of the roster as well, it’s hard to see Avril playing for Seattle next season. That’s before factoring in his injuries.

But Avril says he still enjoys playing football and wants to keep playing if the opportunity presents itself.

“I mean, it’s something I love to do,” Avril said. “It’s what I’ve been doing forever and, just as a competitor, I want to show that I can come back if it’s possible, you know? You do see all the injuries. You see the game from a different perspective when you’re on the sideline. And those thoughts do definitely pop into my head of ‘should I come back or not?’ But again, right now it’s all about recovery.”

11 responses to “Cliff Avril says he wants to keep playing despite neck injury

  1. Cliff,

    Providing it is safe for you (as safe as football can be) we also hope you’ll return, first to the Seahawks and if not, to another team outside our division! 🙂

    Best of luck in your recovery. The 12’s love ya man!

  2. Cliff,

    pack it in brother, think of your health and your family. I am sure you have made enough money over the years to live off of, no health is no fun.

  3. Cutting you creates $7.5 million in cap space, Cliff. With a bad neck, no one will touch you. Just retire already. You had a great run and made a ton of money.

  4. He was a big loss this year – guy can absolutely still play. As to the safety aspect, only he and his doctors can say.

  5. Seattle has 2 former star pro bowlers with major neck issues that keep putting it out there that they want to continue playing. Love both of these guys but this injury can reoccur at any moment….the Seahawks need to get their roster full of younger healthier talent. I hope Schneider pays both these guys whatever is guaranteed and uses the roster spots on other options.

  6. I never would have thought Kam would have his career ended on such a light and fluke hit. Most of us never even saw how Kam got injured. What a huge loss, to Seattle and The NFL!

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