I’m Jordan Poyer, captain of the Buffalo Bills, and I am an alcoholic. Those are the words that former Cleveland Browns safety opened up with for his letter on The Players Tribune.
Poyer credited that he needed to open up a bit due to the fact that his a family man. He has a daughter, a wife and a family around him. The biggest thing that Poyer credited it to was himself. He needed to to it for himself.
“A big part of my sobriety is to lean into the truth. To be comfortable with who I am. And I’m actually surprised by how easy it’s been to open up to people,” Poyer said.
“I had built it up into this big thing in my mind. Even when I got sober and went to my first AA meeting back in March, I was so nervous that someone was going to recognize me that I didn’t even open my mouth. I just sat there listening the whole time, on the low”.
Poyer addressed the problem head on with his Bills’ teammates. When out having a good time with them he told them directly.
“Look, I know y’all have seen me drunk as hell before. But I want you to know that I have a problem. And I’m taking the steps to address it. I’m not drinking anymore. So I hope everybody’s cool with that. I’m trying to be a better me,” Poyer wrote.
At that time Poyer was four months sober and none of his teammates had even known. That would be the definition of truly doing something for yourself.
Many times people don’t open up about their battles due to the response they may be afraid to get. That was not the case for Poyer.
“Everybody just took it all in and immediately showed me 100% love and respect, no questions asked. I was blown away by their support and their brotherhood. Those guys helped me find the courage to tell my story, and to share it with you”, Poyer said in The Players Tribune.
Poyer’s career really hit stride after he left Cleveland in 2016. The 2017 season saw Poyer grab five interceptions, which is a career high. So far this season Poyer has five interceptions, so he could be breaking that mark.
This is just another example of a player with a platform opening up about their battle. Sometimes people forget that even athletes or celebrities can go through things. Sometimes when those people open up it raises awareness and may help someone else address their own problem.
Buffalo is 7-4 on the season and hopes to compete for it all. Poyer will be an important part of those plays.
“I’m ready to help lead this team to a Super Bowl now. More ready than I’ve ever been. My body feels right. My mind feels right. I’m excited for the future as a husband, as a father, and as a leader of this football team”.