The division-rival Cowboys are losing yet another starter from their 2019 season as center Travis Frederick officially announced his retirement on Monday evening.
This is a rather abrupt retirement for the 29-year-old coming off a fifth Pro Bowl appearance.
But it’s not completely without cause. Frederick missed the entire 2018 season with Gullain-Barre syndrome, a rare disorder in which the immune system attacks muscle. While he came back and started all 16 games for the Cowboys in 2019, he didn’t play at his previous level, which was a big reason for his retirement.
He said the following in a statement on Monday:
“I made my return to the field, played well overall, and was selected to the Pro Bowl, but it was a difficult year for me,” Frederick wrote. “Each day I fracked a struggle: I could no longer perform at my highest level. Playing ‘well’ is not what I expect of myself and is not what my teammates deserve. Because of this, I know my days as a football player are done. I am proud of what I have accomplished in my career, and I walk away with my head held high.”
Frederick, a first-round pick out of Wisconsin in 2013, played a total of seven NFL seasons and started every game in all of them. He was a five-time Pro Bowler and an All-Pro back in 2016.
This retirement is even bad for the Cowboys from a financial standpoint too.
Travis Frederick’s retirement leaves behind $11.3M of dead cap to the #Cowboys, clearing almost $630k. It’s a tough football and business loss for Dallas.— Spotrac (@spotrac) March 23, 2020
While this retirement seemed like a shock, it seems like the Cowboys might have known it was coming. They re-signed Joe Looney, Frederick’s replacement in 2018, just a few days ago.
While this is a big loss, the Cowboys have a couple options to replace Frederick. The recently re-signed Looney, who started all 16 games in place of Frederick in 2018. And they also have Connor McGovern, a 2019 third-round pick out of Penn State, who played center in college. McGovern missed his entire rookie season with an injury.
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