A legendary career has come to a close.

Carolina Panthers’ defensive end, Julius Peppers is retiring after playing 17 years in the NFL. Peppers also spent portions of his playing time in Chicago with the Bears and in Green Bay with the Packers.

Julius Peppers was selected 2nd overall in 2002 by the Panthers. He went on to record 159.5 sacks along with 11 interceptions. He’s the only player in the NFL to have 150 sacks and 10 interceptions in a career.

Many have reflected on Peppers’ career, but none more than Panthers’ general manager, Marty Hurney, who drafted Peppers with his first selection with the team.

He’s a special player and a special person. His consistency and the ability to make big plays at big times are what define him on the field,” Hurney said, “Off the field, he’s a great leader. He chooses his words carefully. He’s got great perspective not only on football, but on life. For him to be able to come back and to finish his career as a Panther is a great ending to a phenomenal career.”

It’s been quite a ride for this special player in Julius Peppers. He is sure to be a in Canton, Ohio one day as a Hall of Famer.

(Written by Seth Cohen, a writer for Tailgate Athletics who also run @tailgatenflnews on Instagram.)

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