After 15 years in the NFL, Ravens wide receiver Brandon Stokley has decided to call it a career.
Stokley told The Denver Post that an injury-riddled season in his return to Baltimore was enough to convince him that it was time to walk away from football. He suffered a concussion in the Ravens’ win over Minnesota on Dec. 8 and was placed on injured reserve a few days later.
The 37-year-old caught 13 passes for 115 yards in six games this season while dealing with a groin injury for much of the season. He and veteran tight end Dallas Clark were signed in August to aid the passing game after tight end Dennis Pitta suffered a dislocated and fractured him in the first week of training camp.
“It really was awesome to be around him,” said coach John Harbaugh, who added that his father coached against Stokley in his collegiate days. “[He’s a] hard worker, great guy, very smart football guy who will make a heck of a coach someday if he chose to. Congratulations to him.”
Drafted in the fourth round of the 1999 draft by Baltimore, Stokley has allegedly dealt with at least 14 concussions in his football career dating back to his high school days, which clearly was a major concern after the latest head injury against the Vikings. The Louisiana-Lafayette product has amassed over 5,000 receiving yards in his career.
In addition to his two stints with the Ravens, Stokley also played for Indianapolis, Denver, Seattle, and the New York Giants in his long career.
A fan favorite in his time with Baltimore, Stokley will forever be remembered in franchise history for catching the first touchdown of Super Bowl XXXV in what would amount to a 34-7 victory and the Ravens’ first NFL championship.