Former NFL Player Turned Doctor Is Now on the Frontlines Fighting Coronavirus

Former Tennessee Titans defensive back Myron Rolle is now a neurosurgery resident at Massachusetts General Hospital

Myron Rolle
Photo: Myron Rolle/Instagram; Scott Cunningham/Getty

Far from the football fields he used to compete on, former NFL player Myron Rolle is now in a much different fight.

The third-year neurosurgery resident at Massachusetts General Hospital has been working to save the many patients he’s seen with coronavirus, the deadly virus spreading throughout the country.

“Our neurosurgical floor has been transformed into a floor just full of COVID-19 patients,” Rolle told ESPN. “It is hectic, that’s for sure.”

It was just 10 years ago that Rolle was selected by the Tennesee Titans in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He spent the next three years as a defensive back with the franchise.

Rolle ultimately decided to leave professional football in 2013 to enroll in medical school to turn his dream of becoming a brain surgeon into a reality.

“Coming off a 24hr shift. Our hospital has enacted a mandatory ‘mask on’ at all times policy,” Rolle recently wrote in a post to Instagram. “Future already told us to keep our ‘mask on’ and give out prescription pills when indicated lol. For real though … stay safe, everyone. Do your part.”

Opening up about what his hospital has encountered, Rolle told ESPN, “I was seeing so many individuals with respiratory distress and respiratory compromise, and the numbers are staggering. Our bed space, our operating rooms may even be turned into ICUs because there are so many people that are either positive with COVID-19 or suspected of having it.”

Before pursuing a career in the NFL, Rolle was a standout player at Florida State University, and earned ACC Rookie of the Year and Freshman All-American honors, according to CBS Sports. After being selected for a Rhodes Scholarship, Rolle went to Oxford University to earn a degree in medical anthropology.

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For Rolle, he approaches medicine just as he would the game of football — with drive, readiness, and energy.

“Football has never left me,” he explained to ESPN. “I still wake up in the morning and think of the operating room like a game, like it’s showtime, let’s perform. I gotta do what I gotta do because people are counting on us right now.

“This is our time to help very sick people,” he added. “So that motivation continues to drive me every single day.”

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