Davis, a two-time Pro Bowl cornerback, made the jaw-dropping decision to retire at halftime instead of sticking around for the team’s 31-20 loss. Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott confirmed that Davis left.
“Pulled himself out of the game. He communicated to us that he was done,” McDermott told reporters. Davis, 30, later put out a statement on Twitter explaining his decision.
“This isn't how I pictured retiring from the NFL,” the statement said. “But today on the field, reality hit me and hard. I shouldn't be out there anymore.”
He also apologized to his teammates, saying he “meant no disrespect,” but decided on the field that he “didn’t feel right.”
Linebacker Lorenzo Alexander told reporters he found out as the Bills prepared to take the field for the second half trailing 28-6.
“Coming out they said he's not coming out, he's retired,” said Alexander, who added that he had never seen anything like what Davis had done.
“Pop Warner, high school, college, pros. Never heard of it. Never seen it,” he said, according to ESPN. “And it's just completely disrespectful to his teammates.”
Social media also took Davis to task over his decision to quit. Old, inspirational-type tweets from Davis began to resurface as well.
Davis signed a one-year deal with the Bills in the offseason. He had spent six years with the Miami Dolphins and three years with the Indianapolis Colts before then. Sunday was his first game with Buffalo.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.