Shea McClellin has suffered five documented concussions, and he’s at peace with the fact he might never play again.
But such is the lure of the NFL that he won’t completely close the door.
McClellin told Mike Reiss of ESPN.com that he’s content with coaching high school football in Idaho, but is still willing to listen to offers.
“I’m still staying ready, still working out,” he said. “I’ve learned to never say never, there’s always a chance that I could still play again, but for now all my focus is on coaching high school.”
McClellin, 28, spent last year on injured reserve. He attempted to come back during a two-week window of practice, but said the lingering effects of the concussion returned.
“It’s difficult whenever you get an injury that holds you out, when you kind of feel like you’re good and then find out you’re not. It’s always tough,” he said. “I think it was just over time, it wasn’t just one thing. I’ve had five documented concussions, and probably more than that which aren’t documented. It was just residual effects that I couldn’t overcome, which is unfortunate. But sometimes that’s the way it plays out and you just have to deal with it. . . .
“I was feeling good, but unfortunately had more residual effects from concussions. It’s something they can’t clear you for. That’s the way it is nowadays, they’re tough on concussion things. It’s difficult, but I got through it. One thing I’d say, they handled it like they should have. I’m not upset with them, they’re not upset with me, it’s just the way it is. They handled it perfectly.”
The former Bears first-rounder spent his last two seasons with the Patriots, helping them to a Super Bowl win two years ago. The Patriots released him in March with a year left on his contract.