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3-time Eagles Pro Bowler Brandon Brooks retires


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3-time Eagles Pro Bowler Brandon Brooks retires


Brandon Brooks, the best guard in football during the Doug Pederson Era, plans to retire after 10 seasons.

In a videoconference Tuesday morning with Eagles beat writers, the 32-year-old Brooks made the announcement, which certainly didn’t come as a surprise to anybody.

"After 10 years in this game, it's true, I am retiring," Brooks said. "The past six years I wouldn't trade for the world. It didn't end the way I would have liked it, but to me it's never about the ending it's about the journey. I was fortunate enough to go on this journey with a group of brothers. Not teammates but family. You'll always be family.

"I was extremely fortunate to help bring a championship to the city and made multiple Pro Bowls but there was no greater honor than being an Eagle and putting the midnight green on and playing in front of the greatest fans in the world. Since Day 1, you've supported me through ups and downs and all my struggles. I couldn't imagine finishing my career anywhere else. Although I may no longer play, I'll be an Eagle forever. I'll always bleed green."

Brooks has not finished a season healthy since the 2017 Super Bowl season and played only two games over the last two years.

"It's something I wrestled with since really last offseason. Although I'm a young man in the game of life, I'm older now at 32," he said. "I think my body is trying to tell me through these injuries (to retire). Can I still play? Yes. But can I hold up? After all these injuries at what point do I listen to my body? And I think my body was just telling me and I had to make a decision, and I think at this point in time I think it's the right decision."

Brooks, the Texans’ 3rd-round pick in 2012, spent the first four years of his career in Houston before signing a five-year, $40 million contract with the Eagles before the 2016 season.

He made the Pro Bowl after the 2017, 2018 and 2019 seasons, but late in 2018, he suffered the first in a series of major injuries when he tore his Achilles early in the playoff loss against the Saints at the Superdome.

He returned in 2019 and late in the season signed a four-year, $56.5 million extension that made him the NFL’s highest-paid guard. But he played only nine more games in an Eagles uniform. During the regular-season finale, he suffered a dislocated shoulder and missed the playoff game against the Seahawks.

In June of 2020, Brooks suffered another torn Achilles and missed the entire season. He returned for the start of 2021 but suffered a pec strain in a Week 2 loss to the 49ers and spent the rest of the season on Injured Reserve.

"You realize at a certain age your body isn't recovering like it used to," he said. "It took a little longer than I would have liked and at the end, I didn't have enough time to get where I needed to be to at least get a couple practices under my belt.

"It was unfortunate, really, the last two years how things ended. But for me, it was a lot more about the journey. You can't have joy without sadness, right? And the first four years I wouldn't trade for the world if I had to weather these last two. I wish I could have been out there, but at the end of the day, it didn't happen. Really, 2½ years just rehabbing and trying to get back out there."

So this year’s season opener against the Falcons was the only game he started and finished since Week 15 of the 2019 season.

Brooks also missed three games during his Eagles career because of anxiety -- two in 2016 and another in 2019. By being open about his condition and the value of medication and counseling, Brooks inspired countless athletes and non-athletes to seek help for similar issues.

Brooks has earned just under $60 million in his career, and he’s walking away from base salaries of $13.4 million in 2022, $11.6 in 2023 and $13.4 million in 2024 -- a total of $38.4 million.

To help the Eagles’ cap situation, the Eagles and Brooks restructured his contract that lowered his 2022 cap figure from nearly $20 million to about $7 million.

Brooks said Wednesday that he plans to apply to Penn business school and hopes to eventually work in finance and investing, which has been an interest of his since he got to the NFL.

Brooks played only four full seasons here, but his three Pro Bowls are tied for most ever by an Eagles guard. Bucko Kilroy, a Northeast Catholic graduate, made three Pro Bowls in the 1950s late in his career. Shawn Andrews and Evan Mathis made two apiece.

"Brandon Brooks is as special a person as he was a player," Eagles owner Jeff Lurie said in a statement. "During his six years in Philadelphia, he played a significant role in creating and maintaining a winning culture that will resonate throughout our organization well into the future. Very few NFL players have ever possessed Brandon's unique blend of toughness, power, athleticism, intelligence, and skill."

Jason Kelce, Lane Johnson, Mathis and Brooks made a combined 13 Pro Bowls under Eagles offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland. None ever made a Pro Bowl in 14 combined seasons before they were coached by Stoutland.

The Eagles don’t have another Brandon Brooks on the roster, but they have gotten used to playing without Brooks and they do have very good depth along the offensive line.

With Brooks out much of the last two years, the Eagles have used seven different right guards: Nate Herbig (12 starts), Jack Driscoll (8), Matt Pryor (6), Jason Peters (2), Brooks (2), Jamon Brown (1), Landon Dickerson (1), Jack Anderson (1).

Depending on whether Jason Kelce returns for a 12th season, the Eagles have some options along the interior of their offensive line for 2022. If Kelce is back, the Eagles could go with either Isaac Seumalo and Driscoll as the right guard starter, with Sua Opeta and Herbig also in the mix. 

If Kelce retires, Seumalo would likely move to center, although Dickerson could swing inside, with Seumalo returning to left guard and Driscoll handling right guard.


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It is the right thing to do for Brooks. He's been a fantastic NFL player but at his age he can't keep fighting back to get hurt again. 

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23 hours ago, UK_EaglesFan89 said:

It is the right thing to do for Brooks. He's been a fantastic NFL player but at his age he can't keep fighting back to get hurt again. 

Agreed.  Since signing his most recent contract extension (Nov 11, 2019), he has played in only 10 games - 8 games to finish out the 2019 season and 2 games this past season.  That's not a lot of bang for the buck.  

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