Marcus is a dedicated professional athlete, philanthropist, entrepreneur, and guest speaker with a strong commitment to eradicating the stigma associated with mental health, particularly within the realm of professional sports.
Continue reading to learn more about Marcus and his journey.
Marcus's Story: In His Own Words
Recovery x Marcus Smith II
Listen to Marcus tell his story in his own words in his episode of Recovery x APN: Finding My Identity Outside of Football and Depression.
Marcus's Story: The Road to the NFL
Marcus’s struggle with anxiety and depression began at a young age. Despite these obstacles, Marcus threw himself into football and established himself as a noteworthy player throughout high school and college. In 2013, he was named the ACC Defensive Player of the Year and chosen as a third-team All-American pick.
Marcus became a Philadelphia Eagle during the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft, solidifying his status as a professional athlete. The pressure of his success amplified his personal struggles; even the rigorous demands of a professional training schedule couldn’t help him outrun his mental health.
Marcus’s Journey to APN Lodge
Anxiety and depression continued to chase Marcus on and off the field, following him to Seattle and later to Washington, DC.
Publicly, Marcus was a high-performing athlete who had successfully fought his way to the top of his career as a professional athlete in the NFL. Privately, Marcus continued to struggle with anxiety and depression and contemplated taking his own life.
Consumed by his thoughts as he drove to practice one day, Marcus began to drift his car off course in an effort to end his life. His plan was interrupted twice: first by his wife, and then by his mother; Marcus saw their calls as divine intervention and knew he had to get help. After entering treatment at APN Lodge, Marcus learned to unpack his trauma and identity, get to the root causes of his depression and anxiety, and discover tools that help him thrive in recovery.
Marcus Smith II: APN Global Ambassador
Now, Marcus inspires thousands of people on and off the field by encouraging them to prioritize their mental health. His latest endeavor as APN’s Global Ambassador allows Marcus to reach more people facing mental health struggles.
JOIN MARCUS'S VIRTUAL HEALING CIRCLE
The Virtual Healing Circle acts as a virtual alternative to the locker room environment for professional athletes. Each week, Marcus Smith II hosts a private Zoom group for participants to connect with other professional athletes, share their experiences, open a dialogue, and develop actionable skills and tools to heal and move forward.LEARN MORE