NFL

Rams’ Aaron Donald announces retirement from NFL

By Sports Desk March 15, 2024

Los Angeles Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald announced his retirement from the NFL on Friday, ending one of the most decorated careers in league history for a defensive player.

The three-time AP Defensive Player of the Year announced his decision on social media, thanking the Rams organisation and the Kroenke family.

“I’m thankful for the people I’ve met along the way, the relationships I’ve built and the things I’ve accomplished with my teammates and individually,” Donald said in his post.

Donald was drafted 13th overall in 2014 by the St. Louis Rams and was already one of the team’s best players when the franchise moved to Los Angeles in 2016.

Donald was selected to the Pro Bowl after each of his 10 NFL seasons, all with the Rams, and he was voted an All-Pro eight times. He was also a driving force in Los Angeles’ 2021 play-off run and had two sacks in the Rams’ Super Bowl LVI win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

“I’m blessed to be able to conclude my NFL career with the same franchise that drafted me,” Donald said in his post. “Not many people get drafted to a team, win a World Championship with that team and retire with that team.

“I do not, and will not, take that for granted.”

At 6-foot-1 and 280 pounds, Donald fell in the draft due to his lack of size for an interior lineman, but his rare combination of quickness and strength made him a disruptive force almost immediately.

Donald was voted Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2014 after accumulating nine sacks and 18 tackles for loss in just 12 starts.

Donald was voted the league's top defender after the 2017, 2018 and 2020 seasons, and his 20.5 sacks in 2018 rank among the top 11 seasons ever for a pass-rusher.

In 154 career games, Donald tallied 111 sacks, 176 tackles for loss and 24 forced fumbles.

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