Laurent Duvernay-Tardif putting NFL career on hold to begin residency program

USA TODAY Sports

Free agent offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif will begin a residency program at a Montreal-area hospital next month, he told The Canadian Press on Wednesday.

Duvernay-Tardif, 31, is not retiring from the NFL.

He will take care of medical requirements to become a physician before reassessing his football career in September, leaving open the door to play this season.

“I’m going to prioritize medicine . . . and we’ll see in September if there’s a fit,” Duvernay-Tardif said, via the Associated Press. “After eight years in the NFL, and I don’t want to sound pretentious by saying this, but I think I’ve earned the right to do what’s best for me and not just for football and kind of bet on myself a little bit.

“I’m really comfortable with the risk, and I’m pretty confident there’s going to be an offer on the table in September, if I want it, and if I want it, I’ll take it. If medicine is going well and I feel like I’ve got to be out there in front of 80,000 people to play the sport I love, well, I’ll go but I think I want it to be more on my terms.”

Duvernay-Tardif appeared in eight games with seven starts for the Jets last season after a trade from Kansas City. He spent his first six seasons with the Chiefs after they made him a sixth-round choice.

Duvernay-Tardif has a doctorate in medicine and a master’s in surgery from the McGill University Faculty of Medicine, where he graduated in May 2018. He opted out of the 2020 season to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic by working a long-term care facility in Montreal.

20 responses to “Laurent Duvernay-Tardif putting NFL career on hold to begin residency program

  1. It’s fantastic that he can do this but if I could put on my grumpy coach/gm hat here’s what’s being said in closed NFL rooms. “This is why you don’t draft someone with options.”

    Only in the NFL do new hires get negative marks for being a MD or a Rhodes Scholar.

  2. I sent a friend this article, he responded, “Good for him, I’d rather be a Doctor than a Jet…”, (and yes we know he’s a FA).

  3. Good for him, very intelligent man who will use his brain for the good of mankind before it turns to mush from all the head bashing these guys take.

  4. Hmmm…continue to abuse your body by playing football, or help save lives by practicing medicine. It’s a choice that very few people have. Seems like an easy call to make

  5. He has set the standard so high that even the NFL has been left in the dust by failing to put Dr. on his jersey.

  6. Admirable man, and if he plans on being a practicing surgeon it’s likely best for him if is NFL career ends.

  7. I get this guy is a good guy, smart, driven, and passionate about medicine. And a decent football player too. But he only has a couple more years, if that, to make $5 million plus. He can be a doctor for the rest of his life if he wants. So I don’t get it, but best of luck to him.

  8. You would think this guy was way too smart to play football and have his brain turned to mush.

  9. Seems like an intelligent bet at this point. Get the residency out of the way now so you have options. At his age as a reserve lineman, the market isn’t beating down his door until the season starts and injuries pile up anyways.

  10. He’s done with football, he’ll save many lives so he’ll be missed but he has better achievements to make.

  11. Kudos to him! Football is a game and these days it seems to be an environment without a moral compass. His future will far and away excede any rewards he could find in the NFL.

  12. Knew he was getting replaced so he quit. Admirable to be able to be a doctor and play football but a spade is a spade.

  13. I wish LDT nothing but love and luck. He’s going to be a wonderful doctor. But – If he comes back, PLEASE sign with my Bears!!! That is all…

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