Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Brandon Stokley announced on Thursday, December 26th that he is retiring after 15 years with the NFL.
During an interview with the Denver Post, Stokley said ” I’m glad I played this year because now I know I’m done. Had I not played this year I would have always felt I could have kept playing.”
Stokley was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round pick of the NFL Draft1999. He won a championship ring at Super Bowl XXXV (2001) as a Raven.
In 2003 he signed with the Indianapolis Colts. That year, he had an excellent season with 68 passes caught for 1, 077 yards and 10 touchdowns. The Colts cut him on March 1, 2007. Due to various injuries, he was only able to play in six games. He earned his second Super Bowl ring after the Colts won Super Bowl XLI (2007) against the Chicago Bears although he did not pay due to an injury.
Stokley signed a three year extension with the Denver Broncos on March 14, 2007. In the 2009 season opener, he caught a pass intended for another team member and ran 87 yards for the win against the Cincinnati Bengals. He was released on September 4, 2010.
Stokley signed with the Seattle Seahawks on September 28, 2010 where he was the leading receiver. He was later cut after the 2011 lockout ended.
Stokley signed with the New York Giants on September 15, 2011. After an injury, he was released on October 4, 2011 with an injury settlement.
Stokley returned to the Denver Broncos on April 16, 2012 after agreeing to a one-year contract.
On August 10, 2013, Stokley returned to the Baltimore Ravens and signed a one-year deal. He was cut on October 5th and resigned on October 8th. During Week 14 while playing against the Minnesota Vikings, he suffered a concussion and put on injured reserve, which ended his season.
This man had a remarkable career playing with some of the top teams in the NFL. Injuries are a part of football but when you are having multiple major injuries – concussions, it is time to consider self-preservation. Get out while you are young enough to enjoy the fruits of your labor. At 37 years of age, he has a long life ahead.