“You’re playing physical and you’re playing an intense, violent game,” Cameron said. “You have to gear yourself up for that, but it’s hard to gear yourself up if you’re thinking about getting hit or what the implications might be.”
Cameron said he appreciates what football gave him, and there were facets of it he enjoyed, especially the competition. He also had special thoughts for many of his teammates, with whom he still has a bond.
But though he loved his teammates, he can’t look back and say he loved the game.
“Do you really love football?” he said. “A lot of guys don’t really love it. There’s a few guys that love it. Ray Lewis loves football. Peyton Manning. They love it. But a lot of guys don’t really love this game, and there are players that will read this who will understand exactly what I’m talking about.”
The Cowboys’ franchise leader in passing yards and touchdown passes, Romo played only one series in the 2016 season, directing Dallas on a second-quarter touchdown drive in the Week 17 finale against the Eagles. He suffered a compression fracture in his back in a preseason game against the Seahawks, pressing Dak Prescott into the starter’s role. Prescott played so well with the Cowboys losing only one of their first 12 games that by the time Romo was ready to resume his spot, the coaches opted to stick with the rookie.
At the time, Romo delivered a poignant speech in which he said Prescott had earned the right to be the Cowboys’ starter. He also said he had a desire to still play.