Mark Kaboly | Tribune-Review
Former Steelers linebacker James Farrior never officially announced his retirement, but the guy who spent 10 years with the organization has no plans of playing again.
“Holding out hope for what?” Farrior said when asked if he’s holding out hope for a call from another team. “I am done, man.”
Farrior was one of more than a dozen alumni on hand for the Steelers Sunday night showdown against the Ravens celebrating the organization’s 80th anniversary.
Others in attendance were Tunch Ilkin, Josh Miller, Jerome Bettis, Hines Ward, Willie Parker, Louis Lipps, Craig Wolfley, Chris Hoke, Dwayne Woodruff, Rod Woodson, Dermontti Dawson, Lynn Swann, Bill Priatko, Joe Greene, John Stallworth and L.C. Greenwood.
Farrior, who was released in March, said that he initially got some interest from other teams, but felt it was time to call it a career. Farrior was married in summer and moved to Houston, where he now calls home.
“I got a few phone calls but as soon as I felt like I left the Steelers organization, there really wasn’t anybody else I wanted to play for,” Farrior said. “It was the right time. Fifteen years is a long time to play in the NFL. I figured I better get out while I still have my brain.”
Farrior played with the Steelers from 2002-11, earning two Pro Bowl bids and two All-Pro selections, both coming in 2004 and 2008. He was the Defensive Player of the Year runner-up to Baltimore’s Ed Reed in 2004. Farrior was originally drafted by the Jets with the eighth overall pick of the 1997 draft.
Here is what else Farrior had to say:
Q: Do you have the itch to come back especially games like this?
A: I have a little itch in me but I would much rather see those guys play than being involved with what they are doing.
Q: Do you still follow the team?
A: I watch them all. I am a die-hard Steelers fan. I watch all of the games and try to stay in contact with some people. It is nice to see some of the guys.”
Q: Do you still know what they are running on defense?
A: I still know a lot of the calls. I have to push the rewind button a little bit. I am real critical of the guy. I always feel like they can play better. That’s just being a fan.”
Q: How do you feel Larry Foote is doing replacing you?
A: He is playing outstanding. I can’t even imagine him playing better than what he is playing right now. I always knew he was a good player. He just needed an opportunity to go out there and shine and he’s done that.”