Former Cincinnati Bengals center Billy Price is making a shocking announcement. Price is retiring from pro football, he announced on social media Saturday. The former NFL first-round draft pick says health was the primary issue.

“I had emergency pulmonary embolism surgery to remove a saddle clot that was entering both of my lungs,” Price said. “I am truly thankful to be alive today.”

The medical surgery creates a health concern for Price, who is on blood thinner medication. An internal bleed from an injury can create a life-threatening situation for someone on that medication, Price said.

“I am truly thankful for the opportunity to have played in some of the greatest atmospheres around the world,” Price added. He retires after spending five years in the NFL, and one additional season as a practice squad member.

Price's NFL tenure

Cincinnati Bengals center Billy Price (53) spikes the football after a touchdown by running back Giovani Bernard (not pictured) against the Tennessee Titans during the fourth quarter at Paul Brown Stadium.
© Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

The former Bengals center was taken in the first-round by the team in the 2018 NFL Draft. He spent three seasons with the Bengals, before heading to the New York Giants for one season. Price also spent time after that with the Arizona Cardinals, Las Vegas Raiders, Dallas Cowboys and New Orleans Saints. Rice grew up in Ohio and played for Ohio State football in college.

The former first-round draft pick played in 69 games during his time in the league, and started 45 games. He was also credited with a fumble recovery. Price wasn't able to find as much success in his career after leaving the Bengals. He spent the entire 2023 season as a practice squad member for the Cowboys and Saints. In his retirement message, Price thanked his wife for all the years she supported him as a professional football player.

“I cannot wait to navigate the next chapter in life with you as we continue to grow our family,” Price added.

During his time in the NFL, he was a 2018 Pro Football Writers Association All-Rookie Team selection. In college, he was the recipient of several awards. At Ohio State, he won the Rimington Trophy in 2017. That is the award that goes to college football's best center. He was twice named First-Team All-Big Ten, and he was also selected a Unanimous All-American during the 2017 season, his last in college. Price was a member of the Ohio State football team that won the 2014 college football national championship.

Bengals fans are certainly hoping that Price enjoys his retirement and is able to stay healthy.