DENVER (CBS4) – He spent eight seasons with the Denver Broncos and was captain of the team three times. Until Monday, Chris Kuper was the longest tenured Bronco.
After his retirement was made public on Monday, Kuper joined CBS4’s Vic Lombardi and former Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer on Xfinity Monday Live! Kuper said his decision to retire was mostly about his injury that kept him on the sidelines most of last season.
“That had a lot to do with it. If I felt great right now I probably wouldn’t be retiring. But throughout the season I had a feeling that this was it, and there wasn’t a specific time frame to make a decision,” Kuper said. “Right now just felt right with me and my wife.”
Kuper’s injury occurred in the final game of the 2011-12 season when he dislocated his ankle. He tried to rehab it and it was looking like he was going to be able to play again, but a dislocated ankle is a hard injury to come back from.
“You do have to adjust to what you’re limited to and I think I would have been alright. The second surgery and the second year of wear-and-tear and the infection, it ultimately was kind of a conglomerate of everything and I shut it down,” Kuper said.
Unlike Kuper, an injury didn’t force Plummer from the game. He just left on his own and he said he has no regrets.
“You know when it’s time to go – it’s just time. It’s a hard decision,” Plummer said.
He said it would still be hard for Kuper if tried to play three or four more years.
“It would still be hard when that time comes, it’s always going to be a tough decision,” Plummer said.
“I didn’t want to get to that point where it’s three or four more years down the road and my ankle is worse off than it is right now,” Kuper said. “I want to be able to enjoy what I have left and feel happy and healthy with my kids.”
As far as life after the NFL, Kuper said he’s been batting a couple of ideas around.
“I’ve thought about some radio stuff, but I’m going to take a little bit of time and kind of get my ducks in order and then make a decision,” he said.
Watch more of the video with Kuper and Plummer in the Xfinity Monday Live! section.