Page last updated on Wed Oct 07 11:43:37 EDT 2015
Thu, 09 Feb 2012 07:27 AM EST

Baltimore Ravens running back Ricky Williams has decided to retire from the NFL after eleven seasons, he revealed Tuesday.

“The NFL has been an amazing page in this chapter of my life,” Williams expounded in a statement. “I pray that all successive journeys offer me the same future for growth, achievement and most critically enjoyment. I want to thank all my followers, colleagues, coaches and fans for the energy they have given me to overcome so much.”

Williams temporarily retired already before, missing the 2004 season. He was facing a 4-game suspension for violating the league’s drug policy before he amazingly announced he was leaving the game. He returned in 2005, then left to spend the 2006 season with Toronto of the Canadian Football League. NFL spreads

Williams wrote on his social media account: “Thank you all, but this ain’t it, I’m gonna do something truly unique.’Be you and change the world,’

Since winning the Heisman Trophy at Texas and joining the New Orleans Saints in 1999, Williams has rushed for 10,009 yards and scored 74 touchdowns.

He’s one of only twenty-six NFL running backs to rush for at least ten thousand yards in a career.

Then-Saints coach Mike Ditka traded all his draft picks in 1999 and New Orleans’ 1st- and 3rd-round picks in 2000 to pick Williams 5th overall. NFL lines

He has had 5 1,000-yard seasons and served as a workhorse for the Saints and Miami Dolphins.

Now 34 years old, Williams assumed a backup role with the Ravens last season. Playing behind Ray Rice, Williams gained 444 yards on 108 attempts and scored two touchdowns.

“I have to thank Coach (John) Harbaugh and the Ravens franchise for the chance they gave me this year,” Williams announced in the declaration. “I had so much fun and really appreciated the chance to finish on such a great note.”

Williams fit in well with the Ravens and made an enduring feeling on Rice, who led the NFL this season with 2,068 yards from scrimmage.

“I was big fan on Ricky before we were colleagues, but being around him this year is the nicest thing that occurred to me in my NFL career,” Rice expounded. “As a young player, you have to be around a guy who is able to say what he does, and Ricky was amazing to learn from. The way he took care of his body and the way he prepared, he always showed clearly that he is a true professional. This past season with him is a year I will be able to always remember.

“I had the greatest year with him alongside me, and that was no an accident. I suspect that Ricky Williams is a Hall of Famer. All that he’s done in his career, he deserves that.”

Harbaugh related during his time in Baltimore, Williams “made an important and lasting contribution. I especially enjoyed getting to know him as an individual and I have the utmost respect for him.

“He was remarkable to be around and to work with each single day.”

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