At the age of 27-years old, Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Sidney Rice has been forced to step away from the game of football due to prolonging effects of concussion.
Rice has been plagued throughout his seven year career with a history of concussions and on the dawn of the 2014 NFL season, the wide receiver has announced his retirement from the game.
Neither the player or the Seattle Seahawks mentioned the looming retirement in their press release on Wednesday but it has been confirmed that Rice will no longer be a part of the National Football League.
Rice read a statement regarding his decision, he explained: "After careful consideration and seven wonderful years playing in the National Football League, including the last three for the Seattle Seahawks, I have decided to retire from playing in the National Football League, I have enjoyed my experiences with all of my coaches, teammates and passionate Seahawks fans."
He continued to say: ""I take great pride in knowing I was one of the players signed to help build the foundation of the team that ultimately won the Super Bowl. I'll be joining the 12s [Seahawks fans] in support of the Seahawks as they take on the challenge to repeat. I appreciate all of the wonderful opportunities and look forward to establishing myself as a businessman. I will always be a Seahawk!"
Looking back at Rice's career
Sidney Rice was a second round draft pick in 2007 out of the University of South Carolina, he was selected by the Minnesota Vikings with the 44th overall pick.
He played his first four years in the NFL with the Minnesota Vikings, utilised as a primary option at wide receiver and occasionally employed in special teams for kick and punt returns.
Rice recorded his best season in 2009 with the Vikings, he was selected to the Pro Bowl after he caught 83 passes for 1,312 yards and eight touchdowns.
The wide receiver then spent the next three seasons of his career in his new home of Seattle with the Seahawks, unfortunately Rice suffered an torn ACL in a game against St.Louis last October and was injured for the remainder of the season.
He was released by the Seahawks after the season ended for salary-cap reasons, but re-signed for a base salary of $1 million for 2014.
However, he has announced his retirement at the early age of 27 and has cited ongoing issues with concussion as the primary reason for his exit.