Recapping Brian Urlacher's Hall of Fame Career

Brian Urlacher: One of last great linebacking headbangers





Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images In 2011, Urlacher continued to produce. He tied fellow linebacker Lance Briggs for the team lead with 86 solo tackles and added 14 assists, three interceptions and six passes defensed. As Urlacher's body began to age, his between-the-tackles run-stuffingsomething he was never a natural atbegan to decline. Despite again making the Pro Bowl as an inside linebacker, Urlacher was graded by Pro Football Focus (subscription required) as the 48th best out of 51 middle linebackers in stopping the run. He was still a difference-maker in coverage and still a perfect fit for the scheme. But Urlacher's days as an unstoppable force who must be accounted for were over.





Brian Urlacher a legend, but retirement comes at right time





We were talking, one on one, and Urlacher talked about the aches in his body. The pain in his leg. The sore shoulder. The headaches. He said something humorous that went like this: It's the price you pay for running at full speed into 300-pound men wearing armor. Urlacher calls it quits Linebacker great retires after 13 seasons with Bears He laughed at that, but it was true.





Urlacher, Lewis broke the mold for prototype inside linebackers





I want to thank all the people in my life that have helped me along the way. I will miss my teammates, my coaches, and the great Bears fans. Im proud to say that I gave all of you everything I had every time I took the field. I will miss the great game, but I leave with no regrets. While retiring as a one-team player further cements Urlachers exceptional legacy with the Chicago Bears, he got to the real heart of the matter when he mentioned a decreased level of performance. Urlacher, who turns 35 later this week, missed all but one game in the 2009 season with a wrist injury and, though he made the Pro Bowl in both 2010 and 11, clearly neared the end of the line during 2012. Urlacher missed another four games due to injury last season, and he was a shell of his former self on the field. He finished the year averaging fewer than six tackles per game, which would have put him at about 91 for a full 16-game season a total lower than any other complete year for Urlacher. Rather than bring the former No.





Brian Urlacher isnt interested in coaching or broadcasting





And many teams made an equally right choice not signing him. swagger52 says: Jun 23, 2013 5:04 PM Too bad I respect Brian Urlacher. He would be a great announcer. He could have given us true perspective at the end of the Best Linebacker Ever in the Super Bowl last year with Ray Lewis. Instead of Jim Nantz..Ray had a tough week answering questions about double homicide and payoff. Or this week..Ray is most overrated Raven ever.





Urlacher needs to put more time in game golf game





"You don't ever dismiss Hall of Famers in my book," Jones told ESPNDallas.com. "It would be difficult. He obviously plays what Sean plays. To move everything around for a year doesn't really make a lot of sense. But at the same time, you don't ever rule it out." Urlacher Retires | Bears blog Urlacher, who wants to play as many as three more seasons, said he believes more teams weren't interested because they doubted he would hit the open market. "The crazy thing is no one thought I would leave Chicago," Urlacher said to Patrick. "All these teams this whole time they've talked to, they're like, 'Chicago is not going to let him go. He's not going to leave them, so why waste our time with this?' I think it's pretty obvious now that that is not the case." Urlacher said he is open to play for any team, even the Bears' division rival Green Bay Packers , although he would be surprised if he landed there. "Every team is an option right now," Urlacher told "Waddle & Silvy." "I haven't ruled anything out. I would be really, really surprised if I went to Green Bay.





Brian Urlacher ready for new team





At the inside linebacker position, the type of athlete it takes to be on the field for first and second down becomes a bit prohibitive to be that same guy you want in on third down.'' Beside Willis, the other new breed inside/middle linebackers who are quickly making their mark in the NFL are talents like Carolina's Luke Keuchly, Seattle's Bobby Wagner and Dallas' Sean Lee . Kuechly won the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year award playing in the middle for the Panthers last year, and Wagner finished second in the voting. All are athletic enough to run and play in pass coverage, while still holding up physically against the run. St. Louis first-round draft pick Alec Olgetree is perhaps the most intriguing inside linebacker talent entering the league this year, with almost freakish athletic gifts and the ability to chase down ballcarriers from sideline to sideline. "Keep in mind being younger at that position is at a premium now,'' Carson said. "You have to have the speed and quickness to compete right now, even if you lack the experience and the other advantages that veterans have. It's the recognition skills and the anticipation of what's going to happen out there that helped a Ray Lewis or a Brian Urlacher play as long as they did.









I feel bad for them. During the season, they work 90 hours a week. I don't want to do that. I have small kids. Maybe Pee-Wee (football) or something would be good for me. I can be patient with those guys.'' In terms of becoming a television analyst, Urlacher has drawn some interest. Fox Sports would be willing to discuss a position with Urlacher if he's truly interested.