Post-football life seems to be treating Jerod Mayo just fine.
The former New England Patriots linebacker retired earlier this year, concluding an eight-season NFL career that included two Pro Bowl nods, one All-Pro selection and a Super Bowl ring.
Mayo has kept busy in retirement, taking a job in financial services and remaining active in his charitable endeavors. And while the Patriots always will hold a spot near and dear to his heart, the 30-year-old is embracing the time he now is able to spend with his family — time that previously had to be devoted to football.
“There’s no doubt that I could have played, but I would never play for anyone else,” Mayo told the Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe. “That’s the reality of the situation. The only team I would ever want to play for is the New England Patriots. It’s not like you wake up one day like, ‘All right, I’m done playing football.’ You think about it for a while. You talk to your family. You talk to people you respect.
“I had a great run playing for the Patriots, and I’ll always be a part of their organization. Those guys know I’ll always be one phone call away, and I’ll always be up here in Massachusetts. I still feel as though I’m part of the team.
“But as far as being able to go out there every day and put in that grind, be away from my family for an extended period of time, that takes a toll on you. People don’t realize. They think we just go out there and play football on Sunday. You’re at the office 12 hours a day or 10 hours a day, so you miss a lot of things. I have a 5-, 4- and 1-year-old. There comes a point where I need to spend some time with my family and watch them grow. They’ve been so supportive of me over these last eight years, and it’s time for me to be supportive of them. That pretty much was the deciding factor. It was tough, though.”
So, yes, things seem to have worked out nicely for Mayo, who suffered season-ending injuries in each of his final three seasons. He now has much more time to spend with his young children while also pursuing ventures unrelated to football. He remains a student of the game, though, and said he’d be open to returning to it one day as a coach.
“Maybe down the road,” Mayo told the Herald. “I love the game, I do. I love football. I love the X’s and O’s of the game. I love putting in the time and just breaking down players and breaking down schemes. That’s something that has always piqued my interest, from a young child, so who knows what God has in store for me down the line.”
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports Images
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