This afternoon, legendary NFL kicker Adam Vinatieri made it official. He is retiring from the game of football.
Vinatieri announced the news on “The Pat McAfee Show.” The four-time Super Bowl champion last kicked in the NFL during the 2019 season, but had been continuing to train in preparation for a comeback.
However, Vinatieri recently said that he was beginning to face the reality that he would not be able to resume his playing career.
“Every time I try to go out and push it, it pushes back a little bit, which in a weird way, puts the writing on the wall,” Vinatieri told Jim Ayello of the Indianapolis Star. “I haven’t officially, like, given up by any means. But it’s not coming back the way I thought it would or wanted it to.”
So now, after 24 seasons–14 in Indianapolis and 10 with New England–and countless clutch kicks, Vinatieri is hanging up his cleats. Immediately after he revealed the news, tributes poured in from around the football world.
#Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri has officially announced his retirement from the NFL.
Thank you for an amazing 14 years in Indy, Vinny. pic.twitter.com/cZ1KYATjvU
— Locked On Colts Podcast (@LockedOnColts) May 26, 2021
Adam Vinatieri’s resume speaks for itself:
-No. 1 scorer in NFL history
-4x Super Bowl champ
-3x Pro Bowler pic.twitter.com/MuJ3crPLEd
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) May 26, 2021
Congratulations to Adam Vinatieri on an unbelievable career.
He holds the NFL all-time record for most:
* Points ever scored: 2,673
* Field goals made: 599
* Total games played: 397
* Consecutive FG made: 44
And, of course, the most clutch kicker to ever play the game 🐐 https://t.co/YqJnQ8mAne
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) May 26, 2021
With Adam Vinatieri retiring, a reminder that this is the greatest kick in NFL history. #Patriots pic.twitter.com/5rWGORXJ6i
— Evan Lazar (@ezlazar) May 26, 2021
Looks like Adam Vinatieri is officially calling it a career. And a heckuva career it was. https://t.co/8yeKI1WmlC
— Jim Ayello (@jimayello) May 26, 2021
I love that he immediately flipped the focus to helping his son. Just like he helped so many teams win. What an amazing career player and person. https://t.co/108qRarp1W
— DEC Management (@davidcanter) May 26, 2021
Specialists aren’t particularly well-represented in Canton, but without a doubt, Vinatieri deserves to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame, most likely on the first ballot.
We’ll find out if he will be in five years. In the meantime, enjoy retirement and hats off on an incredible career.