Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Temporary Patriots D-lineman Armstead retires at 23


Armond Armstead is calling it a career.

The New England Patriots defensive lineman, who leaves the league without ever playing a down, announced his retirement Wednesday.

Armstead, 23, originally signed with the Patriots last February after one season with the CFL's Toronto Argonauts. The 6-foot-5, 305-pounder, however, was placed on the Reserve/Non-Football Injury List prior to the start of the 2013 season.

The USC product had surgery last July to treat an undisclosed infection, which was unrelated to a heart attack Armstead had suffered in college.

"It has been a pleasure being around Armond, as he gave everything he could to play for us," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said, via "Armond worked extremely hard since joining us last February.

"He's had a lot of adversity personally that he's had to deal with – unusual compared to most other players – but he's always had a great attitude, worked hard and really did everything we asked him to do. While it is unfortunate he will not be able to play football, Armond is an outstanding young man who has a very bright future in whatever path he chooses."

Armstead signed with the Argonauts as an undrafted free agent, compiling 43 tackles, two special teams tackles and six sacks during his stint Toronto. He was also named to the CFL All-Star game and helped Toronto to a Grey Cup title. He started in 24 games at USC from 2008 through 2010.

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