A number of football players have retired and become physicians. However, John Frank might be the only one who switched to medicine while at the pinnacle of his football life.
But those accomplishments never were Frank's goal while playing college football at Penn State.
"I became interested in medicine at an early age," Frank said of his "Second Act," the fourth part in an "NFL AM" series about former NFL players who have found success off the field. "So when I went to college, it really wasn't my goal to be drafted or be noticed. It wasn't even a consideration."
"My objective was to fulfill my potential as an athlete, and I was still developing when I got to the 49ers," said Frank, a 1984 second-round draft pick. "But I didn't want to do that at the expense of sacrificing my medical career.
"It was a struggle to play that fifth year. Nobody knew the academic peril I was facing. Just as luck has it, we win the Super Bowl that year."
At first, Frank specialized in ear, nose and throat patients. He now works in New York mainly on hair and scalp surgery at the Anapelli Hair Clinic.
"Those lessons as an NFL player were extremely valuable," he said. "I certainly miss those days. I miss the camaraderie.
-- Bill Bradley, contributing editor