Panthers defensive end Jared Allen, the NFL’s active sacks leader, announced his retirement Thursday via a video, riding off “into the sunset.”
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Carolina Panthers defensive end Jared Allen announced his retirement from the NFL on Thursday in an unconventional but appropriate way.
The NFL’s active sacks leader (136) posted a video of himself wearing a black cowboy hat, heavy coat and riding a horse off “into the sunset” even though there was none.
“I just want to say thank you for an amazing 12-year career,” Allen said in the video. “This is the part where I was going to ride off into the sunset, but seeing how there is no sunset, I’m just going to ride off.”
Allen, who was raised on a ranch, then waved to the camera, turned his horse and rode off into a snowy field.
Allen released the following statement through his agent, Ken Harris:
“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. 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.”
Allen played in Super Bowl 50 against the Denver Broncos with a broken right foot suffered in a divisional playoff win against Seattle.
Coach Ron Rivera hinted after the 24-10 loss to the Broncos that Allen might have played his last game.