fbpx

Minnesota Vikings linebacker Cameron Smith retires one year after heart surgery

Jun 15, 2021; in Eagen, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings tight end Tyler Conklin (83) runs the ball as Minnesota Vikings linebacker Cameron Smith (32) defends him in drills at OTA at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 15, 2021; in Eagen, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings tight end Tyler Conklin (83) runs the ball as Minnesota Vikings linebacker Cameron Smith (32) defends him in drills at OTA at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports

Vikings linebacker Cameron Smith completed a comeback from heart surgery, but plans to retire from the NFL.

Smith, 24, issued a statement via Instagram on Wednesday night.

“After careful consideration and thorough discussion with my friends and family, I have made the difficult decision to retire from the NFL,” the statement read in part. “I know this transition isn’t going to be easy, but I am excited to tackle this next chapter of my life with the same passion and pursuit that I did football.”

Related: 2021 NFL Power Rankings – Cardinals soar to No. 1, Titans and Seahawks plummet

He was a fifth-round pick by Minnesota in 2019 out of Southern Cal and missed the 2020 season.

Following a false positive COVID-19 test last August, Smith learned through an extensive physical he would need surgery to repair a congenital heart defect.

Smith played for Minnesota in the preseason opener. He logged 18 snaps on defense, six on special teams, and recorded one tackle before leaving the game with a concussion.

Related: If you’re a fan of the Vikings, check out #SKOL rumors, rankings, and news here.

–Field Level Media