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Falcons, Fans React To Jason Snelling's Retirement

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Jason Snelling had a reputation as a great teammate, so it's only fitting he's sent out with well wishes.

Kevin Liles-US PRESSWIRE

Jason Snelling has retired from the NFL. We'll have plenty of time to discuss cap savings and his successor over the next couple of months, but right now, I want to share some of the reactions to Snelling's retirement. It's unusual to see an NFL player truly leave the game on his own terms, and doubly unusual to see that player more or less universally beloved.

Happy trails, Big Snell.

"I have decided to retire after seven years in the NFL to spend time with my family," Snelling said in a statement. "I want to thank [owner Arthur] Blank, Thomas Dimitroff and head coach Mike Smith for providing me the opportunity to play for the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons are a first class organization run by a first class owner and I am grateful that I got to spend my entire career in Atlanta."

"Jason was a good teammate and a joy to coach," (Mike) Smith said in a statement. "He played a number of roles for our team during his time here and was always ready when his number was called. We want to thank Jason for his contributions to our team and we wish him the best in his future endeavors."

A personal note, here, albeit an obvious one. Jason Snelling was one of my favorite players from the last decade, which was immediately apparent to anyone who has been reading this site's articles in the last eight years, and his tenure in Atlanta basically spanned the existence of The Falcoholic. It's going to be strange to write about this Falcons team without including a big Snelling play or two in the game recaps, and I'll genuinely miss seeing #44 on the field.

Share your favorite Jason Snelling plays and games in the comments.