Colts punter Pat McAfee retires from NFL, joins Barstool Sports

Colts punter Pat McAfee announced at 12:24am ET Thursday that he is retiring from the NFL after eight seasons to pursue his passion in the entertainment business.

How many people, though, are going to wake up Thursday, read the news, then check their calendars — baffled — to make sure it’s not April Fool’s Day?

McAfee, the top punter in the league, made the announcement on Barstool Sports’ Super Bowl special in Houston on Comedy Central, and also added that he will be joining the satirical sports media company that has grown in popularity the last several years. They consistently have the top sports podcast on iTunes.

McAfee, also a successful comedian and entertainer, is following his passion to making others laugh. It’s a admirable move, and what we all should strive to do in following our passion.

McAfee said he informed Colts owner Jim Irsay of his decision earlier this week and that the two talked for about an hour and 45 minutes. Although he’s walking away from two years and $5.5 million remaining on his deal, Pat feels that he’s made enough money where he can do that.

Who would’ve thought that McAfee (29) retires before Adam Vinatieri, who is the oldest player in the league at 44.

McAfee, meanwhile, will turn 30 on May 2nd and soon needs to go under the knife for his third surgery in four years. And he said that’s not all. Doctors have told him his knees are bad and will likely require additional surgeries in years to come.

While he was named to the Pro Bowl this year for the second time, he passed on it because he needs another surgery.

What’s really special is that McAfee is joining Barstool Sports on the condition that he can remain in Indy and not move to New York full-time.

“I understand that some people might be upset about the fact that I won’t be kicking balls on 4th downs for the Colts anymore, and I can understand that,” he wrote, “but please know that I am very excited about the future, and the spotlight I will be able to place on Indianapolis. I will have a fully functioning radio and TV studio in the center of downtown.”

Here’s his video announcement that aired on Comedy Central:

From July through mid-November, McAfee hosted a podcast with several of his comedian friends. 11 episodes, to be exact. He put on comedy shows benefiting Indiana cities in need — like Kokomo this past September. And he will soon put out a new comedy special online.

McAfee said he made his mind up about a month and half ago, which makes his public comments criticizing ex-Colts general manager even more understandable. No need for a filter if you’re going to retire … and already have a job in place.

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