Five-time Pro Bowler and longtime Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison announced on Instagram on Monday morning that he is retiring from the NFL.
“I’ve missed way too much for way too long… and I’m done,” Harrison wrote in a photo caption, alongside pictures of his children. “Many thanks to my family, coaches, the fans, and everyone who played a role in my football life.”
Harrison, who will turn 40 next month, most recently played for the New England Patriots but spent the majority of his 15 NFL seasons with the Steelers. He won two Super Bowls and earned five Pro Bowl nods in Pittsburgh, in addition to being named the 2008 defensive player of the year in his sixth season with the team.
Harrison’s status became a significant storyline in the NFL last season after reports swirled that he had grown frustrated with a lack of playing time in Pittsburgh and asked to be released. When the Steelers cut ties with him in December, the 39-year-old left Pittsburgh as the most prolific pass-rusher in franchise history, with 80.5 sacks to his name.
Harrison was subsequently picked up by the Patriots, recording two sacks and forcing a fumble in his only regular-season game with the club. He also appeared in each of New England’s three playoff games, including a 41-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl.