What To Make Of Vontae Davis’ Abrupt Retirement


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At halftime during their game against the Los Angeles Chargers, the Buffalo Bills lost cornerback Vontae Davis. In this instance, Davis wasn’t injured, and he also wasn’t benched. Based on reports, Davis retired and refused to go back out on the field for the second half of play. The Bills trailed 28-6 at half, and went on to lose 31-20.

“Pulled himself out of the game,” Bills head coach Sean McDermott said. “He communicated to us that he was done.” When asked if Davis had been benched or hurt for clarification purposes, McDermott continued, “No,” he reiterated. “When I get back in, we’ll continue to communicate on what exactly is going on there and we’ll go from there. I wish I had a better answer for you right now, I’m just being up front.”

McDermott wasn’t the only one to speak on the matter. Safety Rafael Bush had this to say: “I think I did lose a little respect for him as a man. In this game, we’re always taught to fight to the end, and for you to give up on your teammates in the middle of the game, I’ve never seen anything like that.”

“Never have seen it, Pop Warner, high school, college, pros, never heard of it, never seen it,” Lorenzo Alexander said postgame “Completely disrespectful to his teammates. He didn’t say nothing to nobody. You know as much as I know. I found out going out for the second half of the game. They said he’s not coming out, he retired. That’s it.”

“I’ve never been around that, never heard anything like that,” Kyle Williams said. “I think the only thing that needs to be said is he needs to be where he is right now. That’s not here. Point blank and simple. I don’t know what the thought process was. That’s the hard part about it; you can’t really wrap you mind around it.”

The Bills were left with just three defensive backs after Davis quit, and one of the three remaining left the game with an arm injury. Despite this, the defense only allowed three points the rest of the way.

Is there really any defending Davis’ actions? While attempting to remain objective, I can’t find a reason to defend Davis. In a analogy outside of football, on Thanksgiving last year, a police officer in the community of Ortonville, Michigan was killed. He lived his life by the motto “never quit”, and it’s an attitude the public adopted.

That motto can apply to every situation, football included. It is the one game where you have to trust your teammates and fight, regardless of the circumstances. For Davis, he decided that he couldn’t trust his teammates.


Photo Credit: Mark Konezny/USA Today Sports

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