Shaun O’Hara, the ultimate underdog who was a walk-on as both a college player and a pro, officially announced his retirement from the NFL today.
Although he has not played since 2010, O’Hara had never formally handed in his papers. He decided to put them in today.
From Ralph Vacchiano of the Daily News:
“(Michael) Strahan still thinks he can play,” O’Hara said on Monday. “If he was given the chance he’d probably buckle it up and go out there and play Wednesday night. And you know what? So would I.”
But O’Hara also realized that “the time has come to move on” so he officially closed a stellar career that actually ended when the Giants suddenly and unceremoniously cut him last summer. He returned to the Giants’ practice facility on Monday to make the announcement that the former undrafted free agent from Rutgers said he never, ever wanted to make.
“I’ve been dreading this day my entire career,” O’Hara began, “admitting to myself as well as publicly that my body can no longer keep up with the demands of being a professional athlete. I wasn’t the most gifted athlete, but I learned early on in my life that perseverance is more valuable than talent. I can honestly say that I squeezed every ounce of ability out of my body and I have no regrets.”
O’Hara told me a few years back that he felt fortunate that he beat the odds and he was always been grateful for the opportunities afforded him over the years. He has been - and still is – involved with many charitable organizations including his own HIKE (Helping Increase Knowledge and Education) which is dedicated to fighting life-threatening diseases.