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Aaron Donald floats retirement interest, but wants another ring

One of the NFL's most valuable players has again brought up retirement, even though he's just 31. But, the Rams will need him if they want to win another ring.

LOS ANGELES — Could Aaron Donald actually be retiring from football this offseason?

Fresh off his first Super Bowl title, the NFL’s top defensive player, and one of the best players in the NFL (maybe one of the best we've ever seen), made some comments on the “I Am Athlete” podcast, leaving some speculating his time playing football may not last much longer, despite being just 31. 

“I’m happy. I’m fine. The thing is, I don’t need to play football to be fine. I’m fine,” Donald said. “I was blessed to play this game, to make the money I’ve made, the accomplishments I made in eight years is, like, I’m complete. If I can win another one, that’s great. But if not, I’m at peace.” 

Donald is currently in contract negotiations with the Rams but a deal hasn’t yet been agreed upon.

On Thursday’s Locked On Sports Today podcast, host Peter Bukowski talks with Travis Rodgers, host of the Locked On Rams podcast, about Donald’s future and his worth to the Rams.

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"Here's what you're asking me to believe if you're saying he's done playing football: You're telling me the Rams, who have paid everybody are going to draw the line at Aaron Donald in the middle of his prime? That seems farfetched on me," Rodgers said. 

"The second part is Donald is the best defensive player in the league and closing in to make a pretty good argument for being one of the best defensive players ever, and he's on a team that has a good chance to go back to the Super Bowl. But he's going to tap the mat to go do something else?"

Donald and the Rams are currently in negotiations for what will obviously be a monumental deal. Rodgers said he doesn't have much fear that the Rams would walk away from the table, noting how they've paid nearly everyone big they've been in negotiations with over the past several years.

Rodgers talked about how important Aaron Donald is to the Rams.

"You need to know where you are in your 'window' and that window is Aaron Donald. Aaron Donald's the window and the window is still open right now and I think he understands that. I think he wants to win more Super Bowls," Rodgers said. "Without him? I don't know what they are. He's such a powerful presence in the organization. And he's probably the only player in the league that you could look at as someone who might be more important than your quarterback."

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