Luke Kuechly calls it a career after eight remarkable seasons

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Luke Kuechly calls it a career after eight remarkable seasons

CHARLOTTE – Linebacker Luke Kuechly, arguably the finest linebacker within the NFL since he used to be a foremost-spherical take hold of in 2012, is retiring.

“I snort now might well possibly be the true likelihood for me to switch on,” Kuechly said. “It makes me sad because I love having fun with this game, I’ve conducted it since I used to be a child. It’s my favourite thing on this planet to pause. The recollections I the truth is beget from this pickle and this group and being on the sphere with these guys – they’ll by no manner hasten away.

“In my coronary heart I comprehend or no longer it’s the true thing to pause… There is easiest one manner to play this game since I used to be somewhat child – play like a flash, play physical and play solid. And at this level I create no longer know if I’m in a suppose to pause that anymore.”

The 28-year-outdated tackling machine and the face of the Panthers defense upright done his eighth NFL season. Certainly, he’s one in every of the ideal gamers to ever wear a Carolina uniform and one in every of the finest linebackers the game has ever viewed.

“Previous his phenomenal efficiency on the sphere, Luke has had a huge impact on this group and space,” proprietor David Tepper said. “In my two seasons with Luke, I immediate acknowledged how special of a person he’s. The honour he affords and garners from others apart from to the sure impact he has on his mates is 2d to none. It’s obviously going to be very difficult for all of us because we know that no participant can replace what he’s been for this group for the final eight years. His presence can no longer be replicated.”

Kuechly’s resume entails seven Reputable Bowl nods, seven AP All-Reputable selections with 5 on the first crew, the Defensive Participant of the Yr award (2013) and the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Yr award (2012).

He finishes his profession with 1,092 tackles, basically the most within the NFL since he entered the league. His 18 interceptions are most by a linebacker since 2012 and third-most in franchise history. His 75 tackles for loss are tied for fifth among linebackers over that span.

He used to be fragment of three teams that claimed the NFC South title (2013-15), and he helped glean the Panthers to their 2d Natty Bowl appearance in franchise history in 2015. He returned an interception motivate for a touchdown within the divisional matchup in opposition to Seattle and the convention championship game versus Arizona — two performs that can perpetually are living in Panthers lore.

“While I wish shall we beget him for quite a bit of extra years, he has executed all the issues the true manner and we appreciate the resolution that he’s made,” Tepper said. “Luke is a once-in-a-skills participant and somebody we want every member of this group to emulate.”

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Carolina Panthers’ Luke Kuechly, top, celebrates after sacking Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning during the first half of the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)


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Carolina Panthers’ Luke Kuechly, top, celebrates after sacking Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning at some level of the first half of the NFL Natty Bowl 50 football game Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Roar/Julio Cortez)

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Thomas Davis  and Luke Kuechly Carolina Panthers against the New Orleans Saints at Bank of American Stadium on Sunday, September 24, 2017 in Charlotte, NC.


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Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly Carolina Panthers in opposition to the Fresh Orleans Saints at Bank of American Stadium on Sunday, September 24, 2017 in Charlotte, NC.

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Luke Kuechly returns an interception during a game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, November 26, 2017.


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Luke Kuechly returns an interception at some level of a game in opposition to the Fresh York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, November 26, 2017.

Luke Kuechly at the game against the Saints on Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018.


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Luke Kuechly at the game in opposition to the Saints on Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018.

Luke Kuechly signals before the snap against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on Sunday, November 18, 2018. The Carolina Panthers play against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018 in Detroit, MI.


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Luke Kuechly indicators earlier than the snap in opposition to the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on Sunday, November 18, 2018. The Carolina Panthers play in opposition to the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018 in Detroit, MI.

Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis during a game against the Atlanta Falcons at Bank of America Stadium on Sunday, December 23, 2018.


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Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis at some level of a game in opposition to the Atlanta Falcons at Bank of The united states Stadium on Sunday, December 23, 2018.

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Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis talk during Panthers practice on Thursday, December 13, 2018.


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Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis talk at some level of Panthers note on Thursday, December 13, 2018.

Carolina Panthers linebackers Luke Kuechly (59) and Thomas Davis (58) look into the backfield during an NFL Super Bowl 50 football game against the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. (Kevin Terrell via AP)


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Carolina Panthers linebackers Luke Kuechly (59) and Thomas Davis (58) seek records from into the backfield at some level of an NFL Natty Bowl 50 football game in opposition to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. (Kevin Terrell via AP)

Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly  during team stretch before the game against Washington on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018 at FedEx Field in Landover, MD.


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Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly at some level of crew stretch earlier than the game in opposition to Washington on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018 at FedEx Field in Landover, MD.

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Carolina Panthers middle linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) during warm ups prior to Super Bowl 50 championship football game on Sunday, February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos won the game 24-10. (Perry Knotts via AP)


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Carolina Panthers heart linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) at some level of warm usaprior to Natty Bowl 50 championship football game on Sunday, February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos won the game 24-10. (Perry Knotts via AP)

Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) celebrates after making a play during an NFL Super Bowl 50 football game against the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. (Kevin Terrell via AP)


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Carolina Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) celebrates after making a play at some level of an NFL Natty Bowl 50 football game in opposition to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10. (Kevin Terrell via AP)

Carolina Panthers middle linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) runs to  sack Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) during Super Bowl 50 between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers , Sunday, February 6, 2016, in Santa Clara, CA. The  Broncos won 28-10.  (Tom Hauck via AP)


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Carolina Panthers heart linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) runs to sack Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) at some level of Natty Bowl 50 between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers , Sunday, February 6, 2016, in Santa Clara, CA. The Broncos won 28-10. (Tom Hauck via AP)

Carolina Panthers middle linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) celebrates his sack of Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10 to win Super Bowl 50. (Todd Rosenberg via AP)


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Carolina Panthers heart linebacker Luke Kuechly (59) celebrates his sack of Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos defeated the Panthers 24-10 to exercise Natty Bowl 50. (Todd Rosenberg via AP)

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LB Luke Kuechly, head coach Ron Rivera

Carolina Panthers celebrate after the NFL football NFC Championship game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016, in Charlotte, N.C. The Panthers won 49-15 to advance to the Super Bowl. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone)


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Carolina Panthers beget fun after the NFL football NFC Championship game in opposition to the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016, in Charlotte, N.C. The Panthers won 49-15 to come to the Natty Bowl. (AP Roar/Bob Leverone)

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