Ravens veteran WR Steve Smith Sr. announced Wednesday that Week 17’s game against the Bengals will be the final game of his career, as he plans to retire next season.
“Football has given me more than I probably could give football back,” Smith said, via ESPN.com. “But for 2016, ’17 and beyond, this is probably my last game.”
“I’m going to miss it,” Smith said. “I’m going to mourn. It’s something that’s part of my life for 16 years. There will be a transition.”
Smith decided to return to the Ravens for the 2016 season after he sustained a season-ending Achilles injury last year. However, it was clear that this was likely the last we would see of Smith.
Smith, 37, is a former third-round pick of the Panthers back in 2001. He spent 13 years in Carolina before joining the Ravens for the 2014 season.
Smith is currently in the final year of his three-year, $10.5 million contract and stands to make a base salary of $3 million for the 2016 season.
For his career, Smith has caught 1,028 passes for 14,697 yards receiving and 81 touchdowns for the Panthers and Ravens. He’s a five-time Pro Bowler and was selected to two first-team All-Pro units.