ICYMI: The inspiring story of how former NFL player Myron Rolle left the league to become a neurosurgeon

NFL safety turned neurosurgeon Dr. Myron Rolle Source: CNBC
NFL safety turned neurosurgeon Dr. Myron Rolle Source: CNBC

Dr. Myron Rolle transitioned from the playing field to the medical field. In 2013, he left his football career behind to go to medical school.

He later graduated from Florida State University College of Medicine in May 2017. He's currently a neurosurgery resident at Mass General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.


From 2006 to 2008, he played for the Florida State Seminoles. The safety put his college football career at a standstill in 2009 after becoming a Rhodes scholar at the University of Oxford in England.

He talked about his parents and their influence on his life:

"My parents were just like any other immigrant family, wanted us to be successful in school, in sports, and they wanted to make sure that we understood that we looked a bit different than the people who were around us, but we didn't allow it to stop us or stymie our growth. I appreciate my parents for emboldening us and giving us that confidence.”

The neurosurgeon also reflected upon the pressures of society concerning being a black man in the United States:

"Being two or three times better than your counterparts is a common theme and a common lesson that's taught to young Black men and women in America. We may not get a second or third chance. If I make one wrong move, because of the way I look and how someone may interpret what I'm doing and what I am at this particular time and space, it could really derail all things for me. So it is a lot of pressure.”

Lastly, Rolle discussed After spending time in football and the medical field. He noted that being a black leader in both areas comes with a different set of assumptions and tasks:

"I think the similarities between being a Black neurosurgeon and a Black quarterback are vast," he said. "You walk into a field, neurosurgery, where you look on the wall of the sort of pioneers of neurosurgery and they do not look like you. Your mistakes magnified, your mistakes not given second, third, fourth chances sometimes.”

Myron Rolle and his playing career

Rolle as a member of the Tennessee Titans
Rolle as a member of the Tennessee Titans

After coming from the University of Oxford in 2010, the Seminoles safety made himself eligible for the 2010 NFL Draft. The Tennessee Titans drafted him in the sixth round of that year's draft.


Rolle never played in a regular-season game for the Titans and spent some time with the Pittsburgh Steelers before the team cut him in 2012.

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