The Great One - Jerry Rice
Jerry Rice sheds a tear as he retires and leaves behind a lengendary career.

The greatest wide receiver in NFL history? Certainly. The greatest player ever to play in the NFL? YES.

By reading the paragraph above, almost everyone who has watched football in the last 20 years would know I was talking about Jerry Rice. I don’t need to ramble on about numbers, 1st in receptions, 1st in yards, 1st in touchdowns, I could go on and on but instead leave you with this amazing fact – Rice, holds another 35 NFL career records besides receptions, yards and touchdowns.

Rice, who joined the Broncos this off-season in an attempt to play in his 21st NFL season, announced his retirement Monday. He tried to hold it in, but the reality of hanging up the cleats was too much for the greatest player in the NFL. He broke down for a moment and wiped away a few tears, and then said good bye to a game he dominated for two decades.
Jerry Rice

“This is a happy day for me. I think the tears that you see are basically that I have really enjoyed this ride.”

–Jerry Rice at retirement press conference

Rice, after being told by Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan that he had made the roster as the fourth or fifth receiver, decided to leave the game rather than take on a limited role. He decided to finish his career now on his own terms, rather than finish his career on the bench. To me, this decision shows the champion he was and continues to be. He could not help the team on the field, so he found a way to help the team on his own, by bowing out gracefully and allowing the Broncos to pick up a receiver who could help on special teams. No doubt he has helped the young receivers in Denver and hopefully passed on some of his greatness.

The way Jerry Rice handled himself both on and off the field was astounding. His personality was charismatic, his work ethic was unsurpassed, and his results were, are and will remain unequaled. The NFL will miss such a player and it can only hope another Jerry Rice comes along to capture our imaginations once again. Good bye Mr. Rice, I too have enjoyed the ride.