Young San Francisco 49ers Running Back Marcus Lattimore Retires

November 5, 2014

San Francisco 49ers RB Marcus Lattimore announced his retirement today, signalling an end to a career that sadly never got started.

“After prayer and careful consideration, I have decided it’s time to end my professional football career,” said Lattimore. “I have given my heart and soul to the game that I love, and it’s time for me to move on to the next chapter of my life and help others. I have given every ounce of my energy toward making a full recovery from my knee injury, and I have made a lot of progress. Unfortunately, getting my knee fully back to the level the NFL demands has proven to be insurmountable.

Lattimore, who turned only 23 years old last week, was drafted by the 49ers in the fourth-round (131st overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft. However, knee injuries from his collegiate playing days prevented him from ever playing in the NFL.

“I am grateful for the entire 49ers organization," said Lattimore. "Their decision to draft me was the realization of a lifelong dream to be an NFL player, and I cannot thank them enough for believing in me and for doing everything in their power to assist in my recovery. I will always be a 49er!"

“This was a very difficult decision for Marcus and it was clear after speaking with him that he had put a lot of thought into it,” said 49ers general manager Trent Baalke. “He is a high-character young man who has done everything asked of him and more during his time with us and we have a great deal of respect for the strength and commitment he showed throughout the rehab process. It has been a pleasure to have Marcus as a member of our team and our community and we are confident that he will be very successful in whichever path he chooses to take in life. We look forward to supporting Marcus and wish him nothing but the best.”

Lattimore went to high school in Duncan, South Carolina and finished high school there as one of the most decorated players in South Carolina prep history.

Though coveted by all of the best college programs in the country, Lattimore chose to stay near home and went to school at the University of South Carolina, where he set the school record for most touchdowns most rushing touchdowns (41) in the 29 games he played for the Gamecocks. South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier at one point even compared Lattimore to the great Emmit Smith.

Although he had immense success at South Carolina, Lattimore unfortunately also suffered two major knee injuries while playing there, the last of which ended his collegiate career. It says something about the upside potential of the talented running back that the 49ers were enticed enough to draft him despite the health concerns.

“Though I am proud of what I have accomplished throughout my football career, I am sincerely disappointed that it must end, but I trust that God has a great plan for my future. As for what’s next, I will be returning to the University of South Carolina to complete my degree."

By Staff of

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