Legendary NFL defensive end and massive supporter of our veterans, Jared Allen, just finished a record-breaking year with the Carolina Panthers, and sadly, he just made a bombshell announcement.
Allen, who’s played with the Chicago Bears, Minnesota Vikings, Kansas City Chiefs, and spent a season with the Panthers, has decided it’s time to retire his cleats after an amazing 12-year career in the NFL, reports ESPN. Allen, who’s known on the field as a warrior, has dedicated his time off the field to America’s warriors through various charities, including his own Jared Allen’s Homes for Wounded Warriors.
In an all-too-fitting video, Allen made the announcement of his retirement just before riding off into the sunset on a horse, like an absolute boss.
Riding off into the sunset pic.twitter.com/wZXovseGKS
— Jared Allen (@JaredAllen69) February 18, 2016
“I want to take this time to thank my family, friends fans, and teammates who have given their continued support throughout my 12 year career,” Allen said in a statement distributed by his agent, Ken Harris. “It’s been a great ride for me, and I couldn’t be more grateful for the memories. It is with a great deal of thought and consideration, that I have decided that I will not return to football next year. I want to thank the Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Minnesota Vikings and the Kansas City Chiefs organizations, who provided me with an opportunity to live out my dream and to be a part of their wonderful communities. Thanks for the life long memories.”
ESPN has more on the legendary lineman, whose career started as a fourth-round draft pick in 2004, went on to include five Pro Bowl appearances, and is more than likely going to end up in the Hall of Fame:
Allen was more than a star NFL football player. His list of off-field charitable endeavors included trips overseas to visit with troops, appearances in support of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and most notably Jared Allen’s Homes for Wounded Warriors, which helped provide handicapped-accessible homes for wounded veterans.
He will be remembered for a flowing mullet and cowboy style that evolved throughout his 12 NFL seasons. It reached its crescendo at Super Bowl 50, when Allen bought expensive designer cowboy boots for every member of the Panthers defensive line. Charles Johnson, who wore the boots with Jordan basketball shorts, said that the team immediately accepted Allen after an early-season trade. He was that kind of guy.
As a football fan, it’s sad saying goodbye to one of the greater players of our time, and as a Carolina fan, I hate to see him go. God Bless, Mr. Allen, and may your post-career life be every bit as rewarding as it was on the field.