Jamaal Charles, one of the most prolific running backs of his era, is going to retire from professional football after 11 seasons. However, before it becomes official, the former Chiefs superstar plans on signing a one-day contract with his former team to retire with Kansas City, according to 610 Sports Radio.
Charles announcement comes on the heels of a season in which he only appeared in two games for the Jacksonville Jaguars, carrying the ball only six times for seven yards. Charles has become a shell of who he used to be, and that lack of productivity has led to his retirement.
When Charles was at his peak, he was one of the most entertaining players every time he stepped on the field. He ran a 4.3 40 and seemed even faster when opposing defenses were chasing him down. Charles was a two-time All-Pro, four-time Pro Bowler and led the NFL in rushing touchdowns once.
During his career, Charles rushed for 7,563 yards and 44 touchdowns. As a receiver out of the backfield, he added 310 receptions for 2,593 yards and 20 TDs. During his 2013 season, he rushed for 12 touchdowns and caught seven more. In Week 15 of that season alone, he rushed for a touchdown and caught four passes for touchdowns against the Oakland Raiders.
While Charles has a career full of highlights, it’s easy to wonder how much more he would have produced had he remained healthy. He had knee surgeries in 2011, 2015 and 2016, taking a substantial number of games and touches away from him during the prime of his career.
Even though the last two years of his career, in Denver and Jacksonville, respectively, didn’t end in the way he would have wanted, Charles will still end his career averaging 5.4 yards per carry, the fourth most of all time — and the highest for any player whose primary position was running back.
Ahead of Charles is Michael Vick (quarterback), Randall Cunningham (quarterback) and Marion Motley (fullback). Charles, even if not on the first ballot, will likely find his way to Canton, Ohio to be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame because of what he was able to accomplish at his peak.