Posted July 26, 2012

Eric LeGrand retires as a “Buc for life”

NFL

Eric LeGrand lived his NFL dream and has now retired as a Tampa Bay Buccaneer. (Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

One of the most inspirational sports stories in recent years, Eric LeGrand always wanted to be part of an NFL team.

And after signing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in May, he can now claim to be a “Buc for life.”

LeGrand announced his retirement on the team’s official website Thursday morning, the first day of training camp.

“Making it to the NFL was my dream. But now I want to see my team as strong as possible at the start of Training Camp,” he said. “I’m a Buc for life.”

In the past month, LeGrand has delivered two speeches that have gathered national attention. He gave an emotional talk to Buccaneers at team workouts in June, then stole the show at July’s ESPY Awards when he was given the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance.

He sustained a spinal cord injury in 2010 as a junior defensive tackle for Rutgers that left him paralyzed from the neck down. His former college head coach Greg Schiano is now the head coach of Tampa Bay.