The NFL’s leading active sack man is on the open market after being released last week by the Atlanta Falcons. And while John Abraham is turning 35 this offseason, he’ll likely be a hot commodity because pass rushers are so damn valuable in this league. And it helps that Abraham is driven, not only to finally win a championship but also to hit some big personal milestones.
John Abraham joined Archer and Bell on 790 The Zone in Atlanta to discuss his release in Atlanta, his desire to keep playing, what might be on the horizon, Mike Smith’s decision to play starters in a meaningless Week 17 game, his chase for a Super Bowl ring and the chances he ends up returning to Atlanta.
On his reaction to being released after seven years with the Falcons:
“I knew it was a business decision. Mike Smith called me [and] I talked to [Thomas] Dimitroff, so it wasn’t like a bad thing. … It was nothing bad because stuff happens in life. I know it’s a business also.”
On wanting to keep playing to achieve milestones:
“I think I got a couple more years in me. I still think I can — I’m trying to catch Mike, Michael Strahan. He’s got 20 more sacks than me, and I’m trying to get that all-time forced fumble [record]. So I still wanna play; I still enjoy the game. I still feel good enough to play.”
On if he’s been in communication with other teams and has any preferences:
“I’m looking at 31 other teams. Any team would be [good]. I still wanna play and if somebody can put enough confidence in me to play some more I’ll be ready to play.”
On if he was curious about the coaching decision to play the starters in the final week of the regular season:
“I think everybody was, but also you’ve gotta believe in your coach and believe in what they wanna do. So I’m gonna play my game and play as hard as I can. So I won’t say it’s a negative thing. Stuff happens, because you never know when you’re going to get hurt in football. It might happen, it might not. You never know.”
On not having a Super Bowl ring yet after 13 seasons in the league:
“I don’t wanna talk about that, man. I’m heartbroken about that. That’s something that I think everybody deserves to be, a champion once in their life, so it’s hurting.”
On the possibility of returning to the Falcons after all:
“I don’t know. I gotta, like, pick and choose right now. Everything happened kind of quick so I really didn’t have a chance to really sit down and think about it. I had some other stuff to handle.”