When coming across headlines such as Ricky Williams is retiring from the NFL one cannot feel that’s déjà vu. Or perhaps newspapers are out of news, right? But it seems this time, the 34-year-old Baltimore Ravens backup is retiring for real.
For the media, Ricky Williams is famous not necessarily for his game but for his retirement decisions. In 2004, Williams made a decision to retire early that took by surprise the NFL. But that didn’t last that much, as one year later, in July 2005, Williams was back on the field.
Then, came the retirement before the 2009 season. Back then, Williams said he will play for two more seasons and then let the others play the game. But things didn’t pan out as he imagined, since he played in Baltimore for two more years.
Now, on Tuesday, it seems that Williams announced the Baltimore Ravens he won’t be back to continue his two-year contract he signed in August 2011. The contract he signed was to replace Willis McGahee, but the team didn’t exactly make full use of Williams’ skills. ESPN’s Adam Schefter, tweeted yesterday: “One of the great runs in the NFL has come to an end: Ravens running back Ricky Williams plans to retire”.
The truth is that although most of the media took Williams’ announcement as a retirement decision, he might just be planning something else. Hinting towards that is what ESPN called “a cryptic Twitter message” from Williams himself:
“Thank you all, but this ain’t it. I’m gonna do something really special. ’Be you and change the world”.
Just last month, Williams wrote on the team’s website: “My body feels good and I know I’m going to train hard and so I’m excited about next year. I’ve grown a lot, kind of falling into a new role and a new city and a new organization and I’ve gotten better”. At that time he also added that “like everyone else, I feel like I have something to build on for next year”.
All in all, even if he does retire this year, Williams has enough to pride on. Among others, he became the 26th player in NFL history to reach 10,000 yards rushing.