Some young men spend most of their childhood dreaming of playing in the NFL. Houston Texans wide receiver John Metchie III had similar dreams, but had those dreams sidelined due to an unseen illness. Metchie has been diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia — a rare form of the disease — and will not play the 2022 season, he announced Sunday. The Texans have officially placed him on the active/non-football illness list.
“I am currently receiving great medical care, am in good spirits, and I expect to make a recovery at a later point in time,” Metchie said in a statement released by the team. “I will likely not be playing football this season. My main focus will be on my health and recovery. Thank you in advance for your support and well-wishes. I cannot wait to come back stronger than ever. God bless.”
In three seasons at Alabama, Metchie recorded 2,081 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns, winning a national championship with the Crimson Tide in 2020. He was coming off a torn ACL suffered last December during the SEC championship against Georgia.
The 22-year-old won the Jon Cornish Trophy, an award given annually to the top Canadian player in NCAA football, in consecutive seasons in 2020 and 2021.
Acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) is an aggressive type of acute myeloid leukemia in which there are too many immature blood-forming cells (promyelocytes) in the blood and bone marrow. This build up of promyelocytes leads to a shortage of normal white and red blood cells and platelets in the body. The signs and symptoms of APL include an increased risk to both bleed and form blood clots.
Symptoms of APL
The symptoms of APL are due to the shortage of normal blood cells. They include fevers, fatigue, loss of appetite, and frequent infections. People with APL are also at an increased risk of bleeding and forming blood clots. This is because of the shortage of platelets in their blood and changes in the level of abnormal proteins in the blood. Individuals may also experience excessive tiredness, pain in affected areas, loss of appetite, and weight loss.
How common is acute promyelocytic leukemia?
Around 1 percent of all childhood leukemias are APL, which is most often diagnosed in children of Hispanic or Mediterranean descent. It is very rare in children younger than 3. The average age of diagnosis is 8 to 10 years. An APL diagnosis should be considered a medical emergency. If you have been told that your child may have APL, the child needs medical attention right away.
Former Colts head coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with APL during the 2012 season and took a