Safety David Bruton Jr. announced his retirement from the NFL on Monday after multiple concussions during his eight-year career.
Burton, who turned 30 on Sunday, told ESPN's Jeff Legwold that his six concussions along with a loss of passion to prepare for the game brought the longtime special teams captain of the Denver Broncos to his decision.
"I'm burnt out, definitely worry about my health," Bruton said. "Another season was cut short by a concussion (in 2016) -- that's six. I'm a guy who likes to use his brain. Especially back in school, I need as many brain cells as possible with all these science classes. It came down to health, and I've definitely had my time in the league. I'm ready to move on."
Bruton, who graduated from Notre Dame before entering the NFL in 2009, is back in school at the University of Colorado-Denver. He plans to become a physical therapist in his post-football life.
Bruton also plans to work with the Broncos' training staff during this summer's camp.
"Physical therapy is definitely something I've always wanted to do," Bruton told ESPN. "To see the people who enjoy doing it, who are good at it, and seeing the reward they get with working with people who work so hard to get back to normal life -- it's so rewarding."
Bruton's 2016 season with the Washington Redskins came to an end after he suffered a concussion in the fourth game. He was released by the Redskins in December and had a workout with the Baltimore Ravens that "did not go well at all, because I just didn't have it in me anymore to do it."
Bruton was a fourth-round pick by Denver in 2009 and spent seven years with the Broncos. He was part of their Super Bowl 50 team after the 2015 season but did not play in the win over the Carolina Panthers due to a fractured fibula. He played 108 games in his NFL career -- 104 with the Broncos.
Bruton later posted on Instagram: "After 8 years in the NFL, I am calling it a day in the league. I want to thank everyone who helped me along the way. This decision did not come easy being that I've done this for so long and my love for the game, but it comes to an end for everyone and mine is on July 24, 2017. Thank you to my family, friends, Pat B., the Bowlen Family, the Broncos, the Redskins and the fans. It's been a hell of a ride and a lot of stories to pass down to future ball players."