Mel Evans, Associated Press
Washington Redskins' John Beck warms up before an NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2012, in Philadelphia.
My dream was the NFL. I experienced the NFL; it didn’t go like I wanted. —John Beck

Former BYU quarterback John Beck announced on BYU’s "Sports Nation" show Thursday morning that he is retiring from professional football after trying to make it as a professional quarterback for nearly a decade.

Beck has been playing for the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League the past year and a half, and his announcement comes after sustaining an injury to his pectoral muscle in BC’s game Sept. 18.

On the show, Beck says family and other opportunities, some still involving football, are some of the reasons he’s stepping away from the game.

“To be quite honest, it was getting harder for me to be away from my wife and kids,” Beck said. “I’m definitely a person that loves being around his family.”

BC Lions director of communications Jamie Cartmell said Beck remains under contract with the club and is currently on the six-game injured list.

"He was permitted to return home to attend to his wife during her pregnancy, otherwise he would be with the team rehabilitating his injury," Cartmell told the Deseret News. "His status with the club, like each player, will be evaluated at the end of the season."

Those who know BYU football, know who Beck is. Second on BYU’s all-time passing yards list to the great Ty Detmer, Beck has been playing professionally since leaving Provo in 2006 where he earned second-team All-American honors from the Sporting News.

After being drafted in the second round by the Miami Dolphins, Beck had plenty of opportunities to assume a starting position in the NFL and even started in Week 11 of his rookie campaign. After that, the quarterbacks sitting above him on the Miami depth chart left the team, paving the way for Beck to seize that starting job.

However, after the Dolphins drafted a quarterback and brought in another, it was clear Beck was not going to be the answer in Miami. He sat out that entire next season and was released the following year.

The rest of Beck’s career saw many landscapes as he bounced around the league from the Baltimore Ravens to the Washington Redskins to the Houston Texans, his final team in the NFL. Then he decided to pack his bags and head for the CFL where he played for the BC Lions.

Though Beck didn’t have the career he ultimately wanted at the highest level, the former Cougar is still grateful for the experiences he had in the NFL and CFL.

“My dream was the NFL. I experienced the NFL; it didn’t go like I wanted,” Beck said on the show. “I just wanted to finish off having fun playing ball.”

Twitter: @GriffDoug