ORCHARD PARK – Buffalo Bills guard Richie Incognito just set the record for the shortest retirement of all time. Just three days after announcing and making his retirement official with the NFL Players Association, the 34-year-old took to Twitter – where he’s been sharing a lot of personal news of late – to announce that his retirement was over, and that he would be present for the start of the team’s offseason program on Monday.
— Richie Incognito (@68INCOGNITO) April 14, 2018
This entire saga leading to Incognito unretiring has played out on Twitter over the last few weeks. Back on April 5, he took to Twitter to fire his agent, Athletes First, a few weeks after taking a pay cut to stay with the Bills. Or so it seemed…
@AthletesFirst You are Fired! I wish you guys nothing but the best moving forward. Thank you for all of your help and guidance along the way. It’s time for me to go in a new direction ✌🏼
— Richie Incognito (@68INCOGNITO) April 5, 2018
On Tuesday, a report from SI’s Peter King that the 12-year veteran was considering retirement was accompanied by another Tweet from Incognito directed at the NFL Player’s Association that read “I’m Done.”
— Richie Incognito (@68INCOGNITO) April 10, 2018
Of course, the curious emoji usage left questions about how serious this retirement decision really was. Still, reports from The Buffalo News announced Incognito’s desire to retire, citing health concerns as the major factor seemed to confirm it. The real nail in the coffin was when the NFLAPA shared that Incognito had informed the union of his plans to step away.
@68INCOGNITO reached out to our union today to inform us that he plans to retire. Good luck to you in the next stage of your career.
— NFLPA (@NFLPA) April 11, 2018
Despite all that, Incognito’s latest tweet suggests this entire ordeal was just a drawn-out April Fools joke. If so, it sure doesn’t look like the Bills were in on it. They announced that they had placed the starting, left guard on the reserve/retired list on Thursday. Then again, this latest tweet could be a joke in of itself, who really knows what to believe at this point.
Incognito is owed $5.9 million in 2018 if he’s actually reneging on his retirement. If he’s actually staying retired though, the dead cap hit Buffalo would take on will be minimal, as they can likely request a portion of his remaining signing bonus be returned.