Ryan Fitzpatrick is hanging up his cleats, with his retirement from the NFL announced Thursday. Fitzpatrick sent sent a text message to former teammates to break the news personally.
Fitzpatrick needs no introduction to fans of the Buffalo Bills, but in the grand tradition of retirement announcements we’re doing it anyway. Ryan Fitzpatrick entered the league after being drafted in the seventh round by the then-St. Louis Rams. Fitzpatrick’s career spanned 17 seasons, spending time with nine teams. He started more games (147) than Steve Young (143). He told Eric Wood last offseason that he wouldn’t play in the NFL if he wasn’t going to be a starter.
The retirement of the charming, often scruffy Fitzpatrick will likely spur farewell posts from all nine of those teams’ various sites. But none can stake the claim to Fitzy like the Buffalo Bills. FitzMagic’s four years in Western New York was twice as long as the time spent with any other club. If it weren’t for an unfortunate catfishing fiasco, it’s likely his time with the Bills may have gone beyond the four-year mark.
Fitzpatrick’s legend grew thanks to his wedding ring-wearing, beard-growing, excitedly screaming ways. Fitzpatrick’s antics made him a popular teammate and fan favorite everywhere he went. In Buffalo, Fitzpatrick fit right in with the lovable, ragtag players of the drought area. By the way, did you know he went to Harvard?
Ryan Fitzpatrick’s stint in Buffalo has resulted in a lifetime of memories. A thrilling shootout win against the hated New England Patriots in 2011. Roasting former teammates Fred Jackson and Eric Wood. Attending the Bills’ perfect game against the now less-hated Patriots shirtless in freezing temps. There are, of course, plenty more FitzMemories. Feel free to reminisce in the comments as we take a look back at his illustrious career.