• Travis Frederick retires at 29
  • Frederick battled Guillain-Barre Syndrome
  • Frederick believes he could no longer perform at his highest level

Travis Frederick is calling it a career in the NFL. The Dallas Cowboys star announced his retirement on Monday, citing his “days as a football player are done” two years after his battle against autoimmune disease.

"After much consideration, discussion, and reflection, I have decided to retire from football. This was not an easy decision. I entered the league at 22 years old, unsure of where life would lead. I since have married, welcomed two beautiful, healthy children into this world, and achieved professional levels of which I could have never dreamed,” Frederick wrote in a statement.

Frederick played for six seasons after being selected 31st overall in the 2013 NFL Draft. Considered as one of the best players at his position, the 29-year-old earned his fifth Pro Bowl in his return last season after missing all games in 2018 due to Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

Despite the feat, the 6’4 center still felt he was not performing at his best and could no longer log in higher mileage. That’s when he knew his time playing on the field is up.

"Each day I faced a struggle: I could no longer perform at my highest level," Frederick said. "Playing 'well' is not what I expect of myself and is not what my teammates deserve."

"Because of this, I know my days as a football player are done."

The Wisconsin product said his time away from the sport fighting the disease was somehow a blessing in disguise, mentioning how it made him realize that there is more to life than football.

“I started a journey almost two years ago that completely blindsided me,” Frederick said. “When I developed Guillain-Barre Syndrome, I did not know how to handle things. I was scared. That experience forced me to re-evaluate my life priorities.”

"Facing the potential end of my career because of my illness forced me to imagine life after football," he continued. "I had to prepare for my career potentially ending. After months of contemplation, I not only accepted that moment but I also surprisingly found myself welcoming the moment."

Frederick became the NFL’s highest-paid center when he signed a six-year, $56 million contract with Dallas in 2016. Filled with gratitude, the future Hall of Famer ended his farewell letter thanking the fans and the Cowboys organization.

“I am so thankful for the last 7 years; however, I look forward to the next chapter of life. Kaylee and I will continue to make a positive impact on the Dallas community which has given us so much. Best of luck to the 2020 Dallas Cowboys and the franchise in the future."

Taco Charlton Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys prepare to take the field with teammates before the NFC Divisional Playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on January 12, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Harry How/Getty Images