Robert Mathis announces his retirement

BY Fansided and Adam Stocker/Fansided • December 30, 2016

Indianapolis Colts’ pass rusher Robert Mathis announces his retirement following 14 season.

Indianapolis Colts’ pass rusher Robert Mathis announced that he will retire following the team’s final home game. Indianapolis host Jacksonville on New Years Day. Sunday will be Mathis’ 192nd career game. Indianapolis drafted Mathis in the fifth round, 138th overall in 2003 NFL Draft. Mathis played his college football at Alabama A&M and has spent his entire 14-year career with the Indianapolis Colts.

Mathis holds the Colts’ franchise record with 122 sacks quarterback sacks. Between 2008 and 2013, Mathis was named to six consecutive Pro Bowls. In 2013, Mathis had the best season in his career, leading the NFL with 19.5 sacks. Mathis was named first team All-Pro and AFC Defensive Player of the Year. In 2009, Mathis was named second team All-Pro.

From 2003 until 2012, Mathis was paired with fellow defensive end Dwight Freeney. Both players recorded over 100 career sacks for the Colts. Freeney and Mathis terrorized opposing quarterbacks for a decade. The duo gave the Colts the best set of bookends in the NFL.

Mathis began his career as a 4-3 defensive end under head coach Tony Dungy. In 2007, Mathis won Super Bowl 41 with the Colts. When the Colts hired Chuck Pagano in 2012 to replace Jim Caldwell, Mathis transitioned to a 3-4 outside linebacker. In five different seasons, Mathis record 10 or more sacks.

Mathis carved out a Hall of Fame resume despite being labeled as too small and not fast enough to play defensive end in the NFL. Mathis is tied with Simeon Rice for the 18th most sacks in NFL history.  Mathis will be eligible for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio in 2021.

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