Green Bay Packers receiver Donald Driver announced Thursday morning that he will retire from the NFL, bringing an end to a career that spanned 14 seasons highlighted by a Super Bowl win in 2011 and four Pro Bowl selections.
Only Brett Favre has played more games in a Packers uniform, as Driver retires as one of only 18 wide receivers in NFL history with 700-plus career catches as well as at least 10,000 receiving yards in 200 games.
Driver announced his retirement on ESPN’s Mike and Mike in the Morning, and said fans can attend his Feb 6. press conference at Lambeau Field, where he will officially announce his retirement, free of charge.
“I played my entire career in Green Bay and have always enjoyed a special bond with the fans. I can think of no better way to retire than to celebrate with them and the Packers organization. [I]‘m going to open my retirement up to the fans … give them everything they deserve.”
It had been rumored only a few days before he announced his retirement that the Minnesota Vikings were interested in signing him, as the unrestricted free agent said earlier in January that he believes he could go to a team and be “their number one or number two guy and be solid for another three years.”
Driver, who turns 38 years old on Saturday, is coming off a season in which he recorded eight catches for 77 yards, his lowest totals since his rookie season in 1999. He was inactive for four games this past season, including the NFC wild-card game which was his final game at Lambeau Field.
He said he’s leaving a special place that he’ll never forget but is looking forward to spending more time with his wife and three kids:
“Someone is always going to be able to tell my kids that their dad was a great football player. But no one will be able to tell my kids that their dad was a great dad and a great husband, so I have to be able to show them that.”