Santonio Holmes officially retires as a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers

Santonio Holmes officially ended his NFL career on Tuesday afternoon.

In a press conference at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Holmes formally announced his retirement from the National Football League.

The Super Bowl XLIII MVP spent time playing for the Steelers (2006-2009), New York Jets (2010-2013), and Chicago Bears (2014). Holmes’ best NFL years were undoubtedly in Pittsburgh, and the former Ohio State figured that it would only be fitting for him to retire as a member of the team that selected him in the first round of the 2006 NFL Draft (No. 25 overall).

“Seeing the tradition of the organization and the history and how they were built by a family around championships, it showed the hard work and dedication that you put into getting details done the right way,” Holmes said (via Steelers.com). “Opportunities are created in time that leave a legacy behind. To be a part of that, to know I was drafted by the Steelers, a team I loved as a kid growing up, and to help them win a Super Bowl, it was more than a dream come true.”

Holmes didn’t have a Hall of Fame-caliber NFL career, but at the end of the day, the former Ohio State Buckeye built himself a legacy that won’t soon be forgotten.

“I wanted to do it to pay respect and honor to an organization that gave me an opportunity,” Holmes continued. “No matter where I travel, I will always be remembered as the Pittsburgh Steelers receiver who caught one of the greatest catches in Super Bowl history.”

The catch Holmes is referring to (see below) put the Steelers ahead for good in Super Bowl XLIII, and made Holmes an NFL legend.

Holmes has turned his attention to philanthropic work in his post-playing days. His charity work is aimed at helping to raise money in hopes of finding a cure for Sickle Cell Disease, which his son, Santonio III, suffers from.

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