The Seahawks have released veteran defensive end Cliff Avril with a failed physical designation, the team announced Friday.
Avril’s football future had been in serious doubt since he suffered a career-threatening neck/spine injury last October, causing him to miss the final 12 games of the season. Avril, 32, said earlier in the offseason that he would sit down with his family and discuss his football future sometime in the spring, by which point he would have been roughly six months removed from surgery.
Either way, he’s another longtime Seahawk to part ways with the team during an offseason of big-name departures. Seattle released cornerback Richard Sherman, traded defensive end Michael Bennett and lost tight end Jimmy Graham in free agency. Kam Chancellor’s football future is also up in the air because of a neck/spine injury of his own.
Callaway was seen by many as a talented enough player to be drafted in the early rounds, but he fell to the fourth because of significant off-field concerns. He was suspended from the Florida Gators football team for all of 2017 for allegedly using stolen credit card information to fund bookstore accounts. He was cited after a traffic stop in May 2017 for misdemeanor marijuana possession and possession of drug equipment. And he was cleared of sexual assault allegations by a Title IX hearing officer in August 2016 after his accuser and her witnesses boycotted the hearing because the hearing officer was a Gators football booster.
I was young, that’s all. Immature, Callaway said of his list of transgressions. I was just living in the moment. I knew I had to grow and learn from my mistakes. When I got suspended, I didn’t think it would cost me the NFL. I just knew that it would hurt. Because I know my talent. I’m pretty good at football.