Member of Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl LIV team officially retires from NFL

Published: Sep. 21, 2023 at 10:03 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 22, 2023 at 10:54 AM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - A year after putting his NFL career on hold for a second time, a former Kansas City Chiefs lineman announces his retirement.

Affectionately known in the locker room as “LDT” or “Dr. Larry,” Laurent Duvernay-Tardif posted his decision on Instagram Thursday.

“It’s been 9 years since I’ve had the opportunity to evolve in the NFL, and sometimes I still don’t get over the opportunity to experience this adventure. Being a professional athlete is such a privilege as well as an enriching human and personal experience. Wins, losses and injuries have been so many opportunities to learn how to win and lose as a team while dealing with great emotions,” Duvernay-Tardif wrote.

The 32-year-old Canadian last played during the 2021-2022 NFL season for the New York Jets. He then became an unrestricted NFL free agent. At that point he decided to focus on his remaining medical requirements needed to become a physician.

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Duvernay-Tardif received his doctorate in medicine and a master’s degree in surgery from McGill University in 2018, officially becoming the first physician to play in the NFL. He credited Chiefs head coach Andy Reid with much of his success on, and off, the field.

“In 2014 I had the honor of being coached by Coach Reid. Probably one of the only NFL Coaches that has positively seen my desire to complete my med at McGill and support me throughout my 7 years with the organization. Being able to count on a leadership that believes that to perform as a player you need to thrive off the field was an unprecedented opportunity for me. Thank you to the Chiefs, Jets and McGill players and staff for supporting me in this challenge,” Duvernay-Tardif wrote.

Shortly after helping the Kansas City Chiefs win the Super Bowl in February 2020, Duvernay-Tardif became the first NFL player to opt out of the following season, leaving the team to battle the COVID-19 pandemic working at a Montreal long-term care facility.

Duvernay-Tardif won numerous awards and honors for his work during the pandemic. Sports Illustrated named Duvernay-Tardif its Sportsperson of the Year for 2020. He also won the Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian Award at the ESPYs in 2021.

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The NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame displayed the scrubs, lab coat, and face shield Duvernay-Tardif wore at that Montreal long-term care facility during the pandemic.

He also received the Medal of Honor in Quebec in 2020., and the Canadian Coast Guard named him their first-ever Honorary Captain.

The 6-foot-5, 321-pound Duvernay-Tardif returned to Kansas City following the COVID-19 season, expecting to battle for his starting spot, but was sidelined for a month after breaking a hand in training camp. He eventually waived his no-trade clause, allowing Kansas City to deal him to the Jets. He started seven of his eight games at right guard for the Jets.

“Although closing the door on this stage in my life will be difficult, I am serene in this decision and I walk away feeling accomplished. I see this incredible experience not as an end, but a stepping stone to other projects.”

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In the past those “other projects” have included covering the 2018 Olympics in South Korea for Canadian radio.

Fans can read his entire retirement message on Instagram.