Panthers LB Davis to retire after 2018

Thomas Davis: 2018 will be my last season

Carolina Panthers LB Thomas Davis has made it to two Pro Bowls since joining the National Football League in 2005, but the former Georgia star is nearing the end of his career. He said he had been seeking an extension through 2019.

Davis told Brooke Cersosimo of NFL Media he will step away from the game after the 2018 season.

Davis said he made his decision when the team signed him to a contract extension through 2018. He said at the time the deal would allow him to retire as a member of the Panthers, who selected him in the first round of the 2005 draft.

Davis led the Panthers in tackles in 2016, but played a reduced role in 2017.

"For me, it was a no-brainer", Davis said.

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Davis is a two-time Pro Bowler and the 2014-15 Walter Payton Man of the Year.

Davis played in and started 15 games this season, only missing Carolina's December 24 game against Tampa Bay while serving a suspension for an illegal hit in the previous week's game. Sandwiched around that honour were All-Pro honours in 2013 and 2015.

Davis told Cerosimo he expects his role to be minimized even more in 2018.

He has 1,015 career tackles, 28 sacks, 13 interceptions, 18 forced fumbles and 9 fumble recoveries.

At age 34, Davis has suffered some severe injuries during his career, but has been relatively healthy so far in 2017.


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