Seahawks receiver Sidney Rice is retiring at the age of 27, the team announced. The news was first reported by ProFootballTalk.com, which, citing a league source, said Rice is retiring because of a history of concussions.
“The entire organization would like to thank Sidney for his leadership over the past three seasons,” general manager John Schneider said in a press release. “His time as a Seahawks player displayed the core values that (head coach) Pete (Carroll) and I aimed to bring to the program and Sidney is a true champion. We wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors.”
“After careful consideration and seven wonderful years playing in the National Football League, including the last three for the Seattle Seahawks, I have decided to retire from playing in the National Football League,” Rice said in the release. “I have enjoyed my experiences with all of my coaches, teammates and passionate Seahawks fans. I take great pride in knowing I was one of the players signed to help build the foundation of the team that ultimately won the Super Bowl. I’ll be joining the 12s in support of the Seattle Seahawks as they take on the challenge to repeat. I appreciate all of the wonderful opportunities and look forward to establishing myself as a businessman. I will always be a Seahawk!”
The Seahawks released Rice not long after their Super Bowl victory in a salary cap-related move, but then re-signed him for significantly less money later in the offseason. Rice is recovering from knee surgery that ended his 2013 season early, but apparently it’s head injuries that are the concern here.
Rice saw his 2011 season, his first in Seattle, end early after he suffered two concussions in a two-week span. Rice also took a hard blow to the head making the winning touchdown catch in an overtime victory in Chicago in 2012, though he wasn’t diagnosed with a concussion that time.
With Rice retiring and Golden Tate now in Detroit, the Seahawks will go into the 2014 season without both of their starting receivers from the beginning of last season.