Coby Fleener had signed a five year, $36 million dollar deal after leaving the Indianapolis Colts as a free agent. He only saw two of those years with the Saints before they released him back in May. Since then, Fleener has not been picked up by another team and recent reports indicate the symptoms he displayed from his concussion this past season aren’t going away.
He spoke with Don Banks of The Athletic saying the symptoms were “still there, unfortunately.” While he wants to play in the upcoming season, he added this when talking to Mr. Banks “Ummm. I don’t know, That’s a really hard question to answer, because, like I said, if you’d asked me a day or two after it happened, I would have said of course. But now I’m kind of taking it as the cliche’ goes, one day at a time. Tomorrow if I wake up and there are no symptoms, then we approach things differently.”
While with New Orleans, Fleener tallied 72 receptions on 111 targets for 926 yards and 5 touchdowns. If his career has reached it’s end, he’ll retire with 3,080 yards receiving on 255 receptions and 22 total touchdowns.
The NFL has stated it’s working to address, and take more seriously, the issue of concussions around the league. It’s new concussion protocol has drawn the ire of fans, analysts and even players for it’s inconsistencies in implementation. The “Play Smart. Play Safe.” initiative is intended to create a safer game for everyone. SBNation’s Adam Stites wrote about the effectiveness of this program and has continued his research up to this past season.
Apparently, Coby Fleener’s agent has received calls about the tight end’s services if he can pass the NFL’s concussion protocol, but as of now it looks as if the twenty-nine year old’s career has come to a premature end. Drew Brees will be throwing to a familiar face in 2018 with the departure of Fleener and the arrival of Benjamin Watson.