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Ex-Alabama LB Rolando McClain eyes return to NFL

Greg Trott / Associated Press
Former Alabama LB Rolando McClain, the No. 8 pick in the 2010 draft, retired from the NFL after just three years.

Former Alabama linebacker Rolando McClain, retired at age 24 just three years into a troubled NFL career, plans at some point to return to pro football, his agent said.

McClain, drafted No. 8 overall by the Oakland Raiders in 2010, never played to the level his five-year, $40 million rookie contract demanded. Off the field, he was arrested multiple times, the most serious of which stemmed from an incident in which he allegedly threatened to kill a man and discharged a firearm near the victim's head during an altercation. McClain was suspended by the Raiders near the end of his third season, and eventually retired.

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"I admire the kid for coming back to Tuscaloosa, going to class and trying to get everything in his life outside of football situated," Pat Dye Jr. said, according to al.com. "It's not my decision to come back or not come back. I think ultimately he wants to play again. He's only 24 years old. He's talented. It's just a shame. It was such a great situation there in Baltimore."

The situation in Baltimore was a brief chance at redemption provided to McClain by former Alabama star Ozzie Newsome, the Ravens' general manager. After McClain was cut by Oakland, he was given a one-year contract by the Ravens. Soon after, McClain was arrested again for disorderly conduct, then announced his retirement. Subsequently, he re-enrolled at Alabama to try to complete his education, and has spent some time as a student assistant in Nick Saban's program.

"It will be interesting to see what happens because the guy they signed to basically replace (McClain), Daryl Smith, is playing really well. I think there are other inside backers who are relatively unproven guys. I think Ozzie has very fond feelings for the kid and wants to see him be successful," added Dye Jr.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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