Former Miami Dolphins, and current Baltimore Ravens, running back Ricky Williams has told the Ravens today that he is planning to retire, according to multiple media reports. Williams spent the past season in a backup role to Ray Rice, rushing for 444 yards and two touchdowns.
Williams spent the majority of his career with the New Orleans Saints and the Miami Dolphins. The 1998 Heisman Trophy winner was selected fifth overall in the 1999 draft by the Saints when, then coach Mike Ditka, traded the entire drafts worth of picks to move up and grab Williams.
After three seasons, Williams was traded to the Dolphins, where, in his first year, Williams was the NFL's leading rusher, with 1,853 yards. The following year, 2003, William ran for 1,372 yards, marking the best two seasons for a Dolphins running back. He eventually played seven season with the Dolphins, finishing his Miami career 301 yards shy of Larry Csonka's franchise record 6,737 yards.
Williams did not play in the 2004 or 2006 seasons with the Dolphins, due to an abrupt retirement and positive drug tests. When Williams retired, just days before the 2004 training camp began, he was facing a suspension from the league for a positive marijuana test. He retired, rather than face suspension, and spent the year in India. During that time, the Dolphins filed, and won, a lawsuit against Williams for $8.6 million of his signing bonus.
In 2005, Williams returned to the game, but sat out the start of the year serving his suspension. Following the season, Williams failed his fourth drug test, and was suspended for the entire 2006 season.
In 2009, Williams served as MIami's featured running back due to injury to Ronnie Brown. Williams would eclipse the 1,000 yard mark that year, setting the NFL record for longest span between 1,000 yard seasons (6 years).
After the 2010 season, the Dolphins did not resign Williams - or Brown - allowing the former Texas Longhorn to sign with the Ravens.
"The NFL has been an amazing page in this chapter of my life," Williams said. "I pray that all successive adventures offer me the same potential for growth, success and most importantly, fun. ... As for what's next, I am excited about all the opportunities ahead - continuing my education, running The Ricky Williams Foundation and whatever other opportunities present themselves."
Williams retires from the game with 10,009 yards, the 26th player to reach the 10,000 yard career mark. He also scored 66 rushing touchdowns, along with 2,606 yards receiving and 8 touchdowns.
Hat tip to rangerjae and Davone_is_BessT.