Tag Archives: Retires
Kordell Stewart hasn’t played in the NFL in seven years and hasn’t played for the Steelers in ten years, but he was back in Pittsburgh today for a ceremony at which he retired as a Steeler. “I just wanted some closure with my NFL career,” Stewart said. “I wanted to finish it off as a…
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Hines Ward’s time with the Pittsburgh Steelers came to an end in February. His time in the National Football League came to an end on Tuesday, when Ward announced his retirement.
Ward made the announcement during a press conference at noon. Ward was visibly emotional during the announcement and paused several times to collect himself.
“Today, I came back to Pittsburgh to grant Steeler Nation this one last request. So today, I am officially retiring as a Pittsburgh Steeler,” Ward said.
He thanked the Rooney family, Mike Tomlin, teammates and other members of the Steelers organization, but he also gave a special thanks to the fans.
“Last but not least, to my fans in Steeler Nation, no words can express how much you mean to me. Today is what you mean to me. Thanks for all the love and support throughout the OTAs, minicamps, training camp, injuries, Super Bowls and the lockout, just through it all. You guys have given me the best years of my life and I will never forget that, never. So, as I close this chapter of my life, I want to thank all you guys from the bottom of my heart,” Ward said.
Ward was released by the Steelers last month and he said the outpouring of support from fans around the world played into today’s decision.
“Through it all, I realized there is only one thing I love more than the game, and that is Steeler Nation.”
“For all the fans for years who camped out in the parking lots on game days in the freezing rain and snow, for all the fans who traveled all over the world, nationwide across the country to cheer us on, the ones wearing my jerseys in Denver, New York and even Baltimore and every city that I’ve ever played in, the ones who voted for me for Mirror Ball on ‘Dancing With The Stars’ and the ones I recently saw in the black and gold giving me a shout out on the red carpet at the Oscars, it is truly amazing.”
“Without the support over the past 14 years this game wouldn’t mean the same to me, wouldn’t be as fun for me. You guys meant the world to me. The city and this organization means the world to me. So, today as sadly as it feels to me right now, I hope today will be a good day for everybody here.”
Ward said that there was some interest from other teams around the league to continue his career, but he ultimately could not see himself wearing another uniform.
“As much as I will miss football, my teammates, coaches and everything about the game, I don’t want to play in any other uniform. The black and gold runs deep in me and I will remain a Steeler for life,” Ward said.
Ward was drafted by the Steelers in 1998 and was once one of team’s most pivotal players.
During his career, Ward had 1,000 receptions for 12,083 yards and 85 touchdowns and helped lead the Steelers to wins in Super Bowl XL and Super Bowl XLIII.
He was also selected to the Pro Bowl four times.
Ward is only the eighth player in NFL history to reach 1,000 career receptions.
Ward developed a reputation for being a hard-hitting blocker and always got up from a hit with a big smile on his face.
At the time of his release from the team, Ward issued the following statement:
“This isn’t how I wanted this chapter of my career to end. I did everything in my power to remain a Steeler and finish what I started here 14 years ago.
“I want to thank the organization, my teammates and coaches and everyone who made my run as a Steeler the best years of my life. To Mr. Rooney, thank you for allowing me to play for one of the greatest organizations in the world.
“To my fans and in particular, Steeler Nation, thank you for your support and all the great memories. I gave my heart and soul for you every down and I will always bleed black and gold. I do feel that I still have more football left in me and I am looking forward to playing in the NFL, again, this upcoming season.”
There was some speculation that Ward would sign with another team, but in the end, Ward ultimately decided to retire as a Steeler.
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Source: CBS Pittsburgh » Steelers
At a 12:00 ET press conference today Hines Ward said he was giving Steeler Nation the one last gift it wanted, and he announced that he would retire as a Steeler.
Ward has been one of the most visible and well-loved faces of the Steelers for over a decade. At least, he is well-loved among Steeler fans. Keith Rivers, the LB pursuing Hines in the photo, probably doesn't love Hines all that much. Nor do a lot of fans of other teams. But the picture says it all. Hines loved to play. He loved to play whether he was blocking for a running back or taking a big hit over the middle or leaping into the end zone.
But Ward brought more than a love for the game. His career statistics, combined with the ways he has changed the game of football, will make him almost a certainty for Hall of Fame consideration. He is the receiver with the 8th highest number of catches, (1000), the 13th most TD catches (85), and the 18th most receiving yards (12,083). He accumulated these numbers while on a team who, during at least the first half of his career, was a run-first team. He has 2 Super Bowl rings, was named the MVP of Super Bowl XL, and was named to the Pro Bowl four times.
And he doesn't have just receiving stats. During his career he recorded 22 tackles, 428 rushing yards on 57 attempts for a 7.5 Yd/Attempt average, and has a 50% completion rate as a passer, which isn't much worse than some QBs we won't name at the moment.
Ward's longevity in the league was legendary. According to the NFL Players Association, the average career of an NFL wide receiver is 2.81. Hines Ward's career was five times the average, or 14 seasons. During those 14 seasons he missed a total of 7 regular-season games, or about 3%. For a man who didn't shy away from contact, that is an astonishing statistic.
But Father Time has a way of catching up with everyone eventually, and Hines was no exception. It is a great pity he couldn't have announced his retirement at the Super Bowl in which the Steelers garnered their seventh trophy, but make no mistake, Hines Ward went out a champion.
Source: Behind the Steel Curtain
Last week, we ran a story that detailed the sale of former Pittsburgh Steelers WR Hines Ward Atlanta mansion.
Today, it was announced that Ward has retired. After his release from the team earlier this year, Ward vowed to fight on and find another club.
We have no word on how much interest he did or did not generate but the fact is that he is hanging up his cleats.
Please click the link to read the rest of this retrospective story.
Source: Yardbarker: Pittsburgh Steelers
* Chris Hoke Retirement Photo Gallery Chris Hoke always played with emotion and it came as no surprise as he talked about his retirement from the Steelers after 11 seasons that he got emotional at ...
Source: Pittsburgh Steelers : News
PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) — Steelers nose tackle Chris Hoke called it quits Wednesday, retiring after 11 NFL seasons in Pittsburgh.
Hoke started 18 games after making the team as an undrafted free agent out of Brigham Young. He was a valuable backup and, despite not seeing much time as a starter throughout his career, provided the organization with steady and productive play.
His 2011 season ended with a neck injury that forced him to miss the final 10 regular season games and a playoff loss at Denver.
“I’ve been blessed,” Hoke told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “It’s been awesome and it’s hard to walk away. I put my heart and soul into this thing for 11 years.”
Hoke says he’s interested in coaching in the future, possibly at BYU, but says he’s concentrated on family time for the immediate future.
Source: CBS Pittsburgh » Steelers
Bruce Arians' tenure as Steelers offensive coordinator has come to a sudden if not strange end, with the team announcing his retirement in a one-paragraph statement that was as frosty as the final days of his sometimes stormy five-year career.
Source: post-gazette.com - Steelers/NFL
The Pittsburgh Steelers will begin searching for a new offensive coordinator after Bruce Arians has decided to walk away. “Bruce Arians has informed me that he will retire from coaching,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said in a statement. “I appreciate his efforts over the past five years as the team’s offensive coordinator and for…
The Steelers have just announced that Bruce Arians, offensive coordinator for the past five years, has retired. Mike Tomlin's quote: "I am grateful to Bruce for contributing to our success and wish him nothing but the best in his retirement. I appreciate Bruce's efforts over the past five years as the team's OC and for helping to lead our offense to new heights during his time."
Well, have at it Steeler Nation. Many of you got what you wished for. Now what? Let the banter begin!
Source: Behind the Steel Curtain