Whitworth said in 2013 after an injury, he set a goal of playing until he was 40 years old, which will be this coming Decembet.
“I was like, if I get through this, I want to try to play until 40. And that was just like — I didn’t think that was realistic or that it’d ever happen. But I was like, I want to try to do that,” Whitworth said. “So this year, to me, it feels like this is it.
“This is like, I’ve put everything into trying to play this season and play at the level I want to. I feel like this will probably be the end, but I mean, all my closest friends would tell you that I’ve said that for about seven straight years. So I don’t know how believable that is, but it feels like it is.”
Whitworth had appeared to be leaning toward retirement after this past season before changing course and deciding to come back for another year after successfully rehabbing a knee injury. He made it back to play in the Rams’ two playoff games.
This offseason, Whitworth accepted a $3 million pay cut from the Rams to secure his spot on the roster.
Whitworth, 39, is a former second-round pick of the Bengals back in 2006. He spent 11 years in Cincinnati before signing a three-year, $33.75 million contract that included $15 million guaranteed with the Rams in 2017.
Whitworth made a base salary of $10.25 million for the 2019 season. The Rams brought him back on a three-year extension in 2020.
In 2020, Whitworth has appeared in nine games for the Rams and started all of them at left tackle. Pro Football Focus rated him as the No. 4 tackle out of 83 qualifying players.