Former Bears ILB Jerrell Freeman Announces His Retirement from the NFL

Former Bears inside linebacker Jerrell Freeman announced his retirement on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon, Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune reports.

Freeman, 32, cited his health and his family as his top priorities in the announcement, which included thanks to his teammates, coaches and fans over his six-year NFL career.

“It’s been a long and rewarding journey,” he wrote. “Thank you to all that came along for the ride!!”

Freeman played his first four NFL seasons with the Colts and played in 13 games over the last two years with the Bears. He had 110 tackles and four passes defended in 2016.

Freeman suffered a torn pectoral muscle and a concussion in the season opener against the Falcons in 2017 and didn’t play in another game for the Bears.

In October, he was suspended 10 games for violating the NFL policy against performance-enhancing drugs. It was his second violation in two seasons. He served a four-game suspension for his first violation in 2016.

He spoke of the concussion, resulting memory loss and taking pills to cope with his condition in a Twitter post last fall.

Freeman had signed a three-year, $12 million deal in 2016, but the Bears informed him his contract would be terminated in February.

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