Jake Long, the Dolphins’ only No. 1 overall pick since their inaugural season, has called it a career.
His body insisted upon it.
Long, who might have been a Hall of Fame left tackle if not for repeated physical breakdowns, announced his retirement on Twitter Monday.
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“Football has been something that I have put my entire heart and soul into,” Long wrote. “I have always given this game the respect and attention to detail that it demands.
“As I continue with my recent rehab I realize that although my heart and mind still want to play, my body is telling me something completely different,” he continued.
Long suffered a torn Achilles tendon in November, just the latest in a long line of injuries that plagued his career. Long’s spotty availability was a significant reason the Dolphins allowed him to leave in free agency four years ago. He has been limited to just 30 out of a possible 64 games since.
“I’d like to thank all of the organizations I got a chance to play for,” Long wrote. “Most of all, I want to thank the Miami Dolphins, Mr. [Stephen] Ross, Tony Sparano and Bill Parcells. ... You believed in me and gave me my first opportunity to live my dream of playing in the NFL. I will always be a proud and lifelong Miami Dolphin!”