One of the most underrated defensive lineman in the NFL over the last decade is clocking out. On Thursday morning, the Tennessee Titans announced that former star lineman Jurrell Casey would be retiring. He will officially announce his retirement later in the day during a press conference at Nissan Stadium.
"My career, it was amazing, just to have the opportunity to play this game. It was beautiful," Casey told Jim Wyatt of the Titans' official website. "I always tried to play to the best of my ability, and always considered it an honor."
Casey was drafted by the Titans in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft out of USC, and made five Pro Bowls in nine seasons with Tennessee. He had an especially dominant third season in the league, as he recorded 55 combined tackles, 13 quarterback hits and a career-high 10.5 sacks in 2013 while garnering a Second-Team All-Pro selection. Casey started in 137 of his 139 games played for the Titans, and according to Pro Football Focus, he turned in a 70 or higher grade in all nine of his seasons in Nashville.
In 142 career games played, Casey recorded 507 combined tackles, 51 sacks and eight forced fumbles. Prior to last season, Casey was traded to the Denver Broncos. Initially, he was upset and said that the Titans had thrown him away like a piece of trash, but any feelings of animosity have now subsided.
"I love the Titans organization – that was never a doubt in my mind," Casey said. "They drafted me, and they gave me an opportunity in life. You sometimes have bad feelings about things, but like I told (GM) Jon Robinson when I told him I wanted to retire a Titan, I told him I apologize for the comments I made, those were my feelings at the time, but not every feeling needs to be said to the public. I should have held on to it, knowing this is a business. It wasn't personal, and they did me a favor at the end of the day by trading me and giving me a chance to keep playing and making money for my family."
Casey played just three games for the Broncos in 2020 before suffering a torn biceps. The 31-year-old said that his body told him it was time to retire, and he's looking forward to embracing his role as a father.
"It became evident when you are getting around, trying to work out, walking up stairs and your body is not clicking the same," Casey said. "Last season didn't go as I planned, I got hurt, and my season was cut short. You have to understand your body, and when your body isn't responding, it is time to step away. I am not a person that wants to go out there and put bad film on the field. I can't do that to myself. I always told myself once I started collecting injuries, I couldn't allow myself to leave this game crippled."
It's Julio time! How will he fare in his first season with the Titans? Can Tennessee finally make it back to the Super Bowl? Get news at your fingertips by downloading the CBS Sports app. If you have the app, set the Titans as your favorite team and get news faster.