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Darren McFadden Retires After Being Released by Cowboys

Ten-year veteran Darren McFadden announced his retirement from the NFL just two days after he was waived by the Cowboys.


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In a long missive uploaded on his Twitter account, the 30-year-old was profuse with thanks for those who have helped his NFL journey. He gave tribute to his wife, Tanya, his two mothers and his father.  He also thanks his coaches in the pro league like Tom Rathman, Kelly Skipper and Gary Brown, as well as his teammates, special mention was made to his fellow offensive linemen.

He also paid tribute to Leecie Henson, one of his mentors starting in seventh grade at the Oak Grove Middle School in North Little Rock. According to previous stories on McFadden, the two didn’t get along immediately because the athlete wasn’t too keen on studying.


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McFadden was not interested in school and would rather play football. By ninth grade, the bond between teacher and student was already very strong. Also by that time, the young Darren had to show improvement on his grades in order to play football. Naturally, he turned to Henson.

“I just want to say that I make this decision not with sadness or without further opportunity, but with a couple of days to reflect on how I feel and where I am at this stage of life,” the statement read.


Tony Gutierrez/AP

McFadden said that he knows that retiring was the right move for him. “I look forward to what the future holds,” he said, hinting that it includes more time for his family and watching Arkansas football.

In June 2008, McFadden signed a $48 million contract with Oakland Raiders for six years. He then signed a one-year extension worth $1.75 million. In March 2015, he inked a $3 million contract with the Cowboys, and another one year extension worth $980,000.

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