After sitting out last year, former Kansas City Chiefs LB Zach Thomas will announce his retirement after signing a one-day contract with the Miami Dolphins.
Thomas’ career in Miami ended in 2007. He signed as a free agent with the Dallas Cowboys in 2008, playing one season there. He was released by the Kansas City Chiefs after the 2009 preseason.
Thomas was drafted in the fifth round by Miami in 1996 and his emergence prompted him to replace current Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio at middle linebacker. Del Rio, who was cut in preseason, went on to retire.
The undersized, hard-hitting Thomas was the anchor of the Dolphins’ defense for 12 seasons and was among the most productive linebackers in the NFL for years before a series of concussions sidetracked his career.
Once he was released by the Chiefs last season, Thomas filed an injury grievance even though his agent said he still wanted to play and doctors had cleared him to play.
I can’t even begin to imagine how tough it was for Thomas to finally come around to the fact that he couldn’t play the game anymore, but you have to be smart when it comes to concussions. He is a smart guy that should have a great post-playing career in the sport, something that he could have cheated himself of if he tried to get back on the field again.