NFL's Brian Dawkins Retires After 16 Seasons
Denver Broncos defensive back Brian Dawkins, 38, also known by his nickname "Wolverine," announced his retirement from the NFL after 16 seasons on Monday to Broncos coach John Fox before revealing the news on Twitter.
"The Lord has blessed me to play in the NFL for 16 years," Dawkins tweeted. "I would like to thank the Eagles and the Broncos for believing in me. I would like to thank all my teammates and coaches that I have been blessed to go to battle with. Along with [you], the fans, for helping make my career [one] that I have enjoyed tremendously. In other words, I am announcing my retirement from the NFL."
Before signing with the Broncos in 2009 as a free agent, Dawkins spent the first 13 years of his career with the Philadelphia Eagles, where he was a figurehead of the team. "There's always going to be pain," Dawkins said of his departure from the Eagles, reports The Bellingham Herald. "There's always going to be feelings there."
Although Dawkins had been suffering from problems with his neck relating to an injury he suffered last season, Dawkins insisted that he could have played another season, and that his neck injury isn't the reason behind his retirement.
It remains unclear at this point if Dawkins will retire as a Bronco or an Eagle. The Eagles announced that they will honor Dawkins on Sunday night's game against the New York Giants. "The NFL will miss a player as talented, ferocious, and determined as Brian Dawkins," said Eagles head coach Andy Reid in a statement, according to The Times Herald. "He was one of the most dedicated and hardest working players I have ever coached …. He will go down as one of the greatest Eagles of all time, and I have no doubt we'll be celebrating his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame."