When Armonty Bryant was released by the Raiders last May, the team attached a non-football illness designation to the designation and Bryant has been fighting that illness ever since.
Raiders doctors told Bryant to get his kidneys checked out after an April physical and Bryant was diagnosed with focal segmental glomerulosclerosis a short time later. The condition has resulted in end stage renal failure and Bryant is currently on dialysis while he waits for a transplant.
“They say the kidney is a silent killer,” Bryant said, via Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com. “It’s true because I can tell you right now, I had nothing wrong with me. I had a little back issues, but that’s about it. I never thought that this could end my career, basically.”
Bryant played 36 games for the Browns and Lions from 2013 to 2016. He served three suspensions for violating the league’s substance abuse policy before being released by the Lions in 2017.
Bryant’s wife Kim, who is due to give birth to a child, said the situation is “completely depressing” her husband as he can’t transition to a post-football life while waiting to find a donor. Bryant thought he had found one that matched his type-O blood, but further tests showed it wasn’t as good a match as hoped.
One hope is that Bryant is a donor match program where Bryant would “get a match from someone else and his donor gives a kidney to someone with whom he or she is a match.”
“I need a kidney,” Bryant said. “And I want people to know you don’t have to be a match for me to donate a kidney. Why not save someone else’s life and mine at the same time?”
We hope Bryant finds the help he needs and has many years to share with his growing family.