He was drafted by the Eagles in the first round where he was selected an All-Rookie selection in 2000 and went to the Pro Bowl in 2003 with 7 ½ sacks.
Head Coach Jeff Fisher stated “We’re going to miss Corey. Corey and I talked this over yesterday. He has spent a lot of time discussing it with his wife Natasha and we want to wish Corey Simon and his wife Natasha the best.”
It appears that his battle with pain caused by polyarthritis, which is a severe type of arthritis that affects two or more joints. Although his playing time had been limited this season he was well liked by all of his teammates.
Here are some of his comments Thursday at his retirement announcement.
Simon: “I didn’t really prepare anything for this day and I definitely didn’t foresee it coming when I came here a couple months ago. I want to first just thank the Titans organization, coach and his staff for everything that they’ve done. Going through what I’ve been through over the last couple years and then coming here, I told coach and told (general manager) Mike (Reinfeldt) that this has been just a complete 180 (degree turn). The joy of coming to work every day, being in that locker room with those guys – this city really should be proud of this team because it’s a very unique team. It’s a very unique bunch of guys. We have a lot of fun coming to work every day. You can’t say that about every locker room. You can’t say that about every team. You definitely can’t say that about every job. But I’ve enjoyed this to the fullest. I’ve enjoyed eight years. I’ve had fun, done a lot of things and had a lot of success, both individually and on different teams.
It was definitely a hard decision because you never really see this day coming. I thought I’d play this game forever. In a sense, I’m only thirty years old and I’ve played this game much of my life. I still have a long life to live, but I’m going to miss it. I’m going to miss the camaraderie. I’m going to miss the guys hanging out after games and hanging out after the season. But I’m going to look toward the future and spending time with my family, and definitely following this organization and this team, watching them go forward. Hopefully in mid-February I’ll be watching the Tennessee Titans play for a Super Bowl, because I think the guys in the locker room are just that special. So I thank you, coach. ”
What made you decide to retire?
Simon: “Just my body. It’s been a struggle, especially the last couple weeks, to just get my body to recover after every practice. To go out there and do it, I hurt every day. But this is something that I love to do, and I tried to push it as long as I could. My body was just telling me, ‘It’s time to let it go and move on to something else.’ So I’ve just been debating this over the last couple weeks and it was just finally time. ”
Was your year off from football detrimental to your career?
Simon: “No. I think it really helped me because last year, dealing with what I had to deal with, with polyarthritis, and dealing with all that, I was in no shape to play. I had a wonderful offseason working out and getting my body physically ready to get back at it. It just started breaking down on me. As you play this game, the more you play, the harder it is to recover, and that’s what it became for me. ”
Will you have to deal with polyarthritis for the long term?
Simon: “I hope not. Hopefully we’ll get this thing figured out, get it under wraps and move forward with my life. I’d hate to have to deal with it for the rest of my life. ”
How fortunate do you feel to have been in the NFL for eight successful seasons?
Simon: “I’m extremely blessed. When you look at this league, I think the number had dropped a little. I think three years is the average that a guy gets to play, and I’ve played eight in this league. I’m extremely fortunate and extremely blessed. I thank God that He has allowed me to play this game. Not many people get to love what they do for a living, and I’ve gotten to do that for the last eight years. ”
What are your plans for the future?
Simon: “I’m going to stick around here in Nashville for a little while. I was telling Mike (Reinfeldt) I’m not ready to go to the office yet. I have an insurance company that I’m part owner of back in Florida. I’m not ready to sit down in an office and do that part of it. So I’m just going to enjoy retirement and enjoy spending time with my family. We’ll go from there. ”
How do you think the Titans will do this season?
Simon: “Like I said, I hope to be watching this team in February. I think they have potential on this team to go that far. It’s the chemistry that gets you there. These guys work extremely hard out there on that field and they get it done in the classroom when we’re studying film. I see us going that far. ”
What was the highlight of your career?
Simon: “For me, it’s been the last two months. It’s been coming here. The guys I got to work with, I haven’t had that in my life and in my career for about six years now, playing in Philadelphia. But these guys are really special to me and they’ve made it fun every step of the way.”