Thomas Davis Will Retire After 2018


Carolina Panthers LB Thomas Davis has made it to two Pro Bowls since joining the National Football League in 2005, but the former Georgia star is nearing the end of his career. While the Panthers didn't make an official announcement, the team posted a picture of Davis on its Twitter page with the word "Respect".

Davis was a first-round (14th overall) draft pick by the Panthers in 2005 out of the University of Georgia.

Last offseason, Davis got a one-year extension that runs through the 2018 season.

Davis told's Brooke Cersosimo of his plans, and the Panthers tweeted the following picture shortly thereafter.

The linebacker turns 35 in March, and has battled back from three ACL tears.

"This was a tough year for me", Davis said. Over the 15 games he appeared in during the regular season, he recorded 76 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and recovered a fumble. A bit of a late bloomer, Davis did not make a Pro Bowl in any of his first 10 seasons but made back-to-back Pro Bowls in 2015 and 2016. Over the course of his career Thomas has 1,019 tackles to his credit, along with 28 sacks and 13 interceptions.

During the team's locker cleanout last week after a wild-card loss to the New Orleans Saints, Davis said he expects to play a "reduced role" on defense in 2018.