New York Jets running back Matt Forte has announced his retirement from the game of football in a heartfelt social media post.
— Matt Forte (@MattForte22) February 28, 2018
“For the past 10 years, I’ve been blessed to play professionally a game that I’ve loved since I was 6 years old. But, after much prayer and reflection, I’ve decided to retire from the NFL. Like so many others before me, this game has enhanced my life in numerous ways. My career in the League has been nothing short of a miracle granted by God and put on display for His glory. I will cherish the many memories made on the field and the life-long friends I’ve made over the years in the locker room.
I’m even more grateful that God blessed me with Gene and Gilda Forté; my two amazing parents that constantly supplied me with unending love, support, patience, and motivation since I came into this world. I’ve become the man and father that I am today because of both of you. I am forever indebted to Jimmie and Dolores Daniels and the city of Chicago because not only did I get to live out my childhood dream in playing for the Bears, but also it was here where I fell in Love with my beautiful wife Danielle and started a family of my own.
I want to thank my agent Adisa Bakari for guidance throughout my career and preparing me for this moment and for life after football while still playing. It’s not often that you see an agent who cares about his clients beyond the contracts and field and for that, I appreciate you. I’d like to thank the New York Jets organization for the past two years. My experience as a Jet was truly first rate. To all of my many coaches and teachers over the years, thank you for your dedication and commitment to my growth and success as a person and player.
To the McCaskey family and the entire Chicago Bears organization, thank you for the honor of allowing me to be a part of the rich Chicago Bears tradition and to run in the footsteps of greats like Gale Sayers and Walter Payton. Lastly, to all Chicago Bears fans, you’re truly the best fans in all of professional sports. Thank you for embracing my family and me from day one! The roar of the crowd at Soldier Field as I’d break a run or make a big catch will forever be ingrained in my mind. The past 25 years playing America’s game has left me with unparalleled joy. But, it’s time for the workhorse to finally rest in his stable. While my heart is a bit heavy as I close this chapter of my life, I am excited about what the future holds. God Bless and Bear Down!” — Via Jason Romano of Sports Spectrum.
Forte had a magical 10-year career spending time with the Chicago Bears and most recently with the Jets. He captivated the NFL with his smooth running style which made Bears fans reminisce about Walter Payton.
In the NFL today you have to be a versatile player. You can’t just be good at running the football. You have to be able to pass block and catch passes out of the backfield, something Forte excelled in.
Forte finished his career 32nd on the all-time rushing list (9,976) and 43rd overall on the NFL’s all-purpose career yardage list (14,468), per Sports Spectrum. But he’ll likely be remembered for his prolific ability out of the backfield with 554 career receptions, 4,672 receiving yards and 21 touchdowns.
I’m glad that Forte is leaving somewhat on his own terms because the Jets were likely going to release him and save $3 million in cap savings otherwise. Let’s just call this a mutual parting.
Now the Jets have two backs on the roster who have not proven capable of handling a full running back workload. This seemed to be a formality that Forte was moving on and now that it’s official, the Jets priority list just got a fat new position: running back.