Over the course of 11 seasons in the NFL, Devin Hester made a name for himself as one of the most explosive players in league history. On Tuesday, Hester officially announced his retirement.
In a post he published on Twitter, Hester made a lengthy statement about his extraordinary career, even taking a little dig at the NFL in the process.
“I have good news and bad news,” Hester wrote. “Good news: Commissioner Goodell, you can put the kickoff back at the 30. Bad news: Y’all will have to find a new favorite returner.
“Over the last year, I’ve spent time reflecting on my career surrounded by friends and family, and I realized it’s time for me to officially retire from the NFL.”
Hester went on to make special mention of all the Chicago Bears fans, where he quickly emerged as one of the dynamic players in the game with 11 return touchdowns in his first two seasons.
He also thanked the fans of the Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens and Seattle Seahawks, all teams that he played for in the later stages of his career, before finally making a quick case for a place in the NFL Hall of Fame.
“Hopefully next time I see y’all it’ll be in Canton.”
Hester holds the NFL record for the most punt and kick returns for touchdown in NFL history with 19. And, while the dangerousness of kickoffs were the actual reason for moving kickoffs forward from the 30-yard line to the 35, he definitely changed the game with his speed and the ability to make people miss in the open field.
It’s hard to say if that will be enough to earn him a place at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, as no return specialist has ever been inducted. But if there were ever a place to start, Devin Hester would have to be it.
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