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Bengals linebacker Trevor Roach announces retirement from football

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The Bengals linebacker is hanging up his cleats before he even turns 25.

NFL: Preseason-Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Cincinnati Bengals are placing Trevor Roach on the Reserved/Retired list after the linebacker announced his retirement from the NFL on Friday.

Roach attributed his decision to simply not having the same love for the game that got him into the NFL.

“Once I realized I didn’t love football like I used to, it wasn’t worth going forward,” Roach told Bengals.com. “The money’s good, but that’s not why I got into it. When I started showing up and it felt like work, that’s when I knew it was time.”

Roach also said his wife’s job as a nurse at Children’s Hospital in Omaha is a factor, being that his job with the Bengals would keep them apart far more than they want to be, though the decision is ultimately due to not having that same love and drive for football.

“She really loves her job and we would have been living apart again for a lot of the year,” Roach said. “There were a couple of factors, but mainly it was falling out of love with it. And I want to start my own career and I’ve seen guys play for 10 years and have their bodies beat up and I didn’t want to do that.”

Roach, who joined the Bengals in 2015 as an undrafted free agent from Nebraska, spent the 2015 regular season on the practice squad and was signed to the roster for the team’s Wild Card playoff game, seeing action on special teams.

He would eventually make the 53-man roster again this past season and play in four games in 2016 (Games 1-3 and 16). He spent the remainder of the season on the practice squad. Roach spent most of his time on the roster on special teams and rarely saw the field with the defense.

This news comes out of nowhere, and it’s a small hit to the Bengals’ linebacker unit heading into next season. For now, Rey Maualuga, Nick Vigil, Marquis Flowers, P.J. Dawson, Vontaze Burfict, Vincent Rey, and Bryson Albright are signed for the 2017 season.

Roach would have battled Flowers, Albright and Dawson for one of the final linebacker spots on the 2017 team. Given Roach’s experience and time he’s spent on the roster, he was more than capable of winning one of those final spots again, but it looks like he’s ready for life after football instead.

Going forward, this news will likely change nothing for the Bengals this year and how they’ll approach the draft and free agency. Karlos Dansby could still be re-signed, Maualuga could be a cap casualty, and Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster could be the team’s first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

None of those decisions will ultimately be changed based on Roach retiring, though we wish him nothing but the best with his post-football life.