Why did Robbie Gould retire? Inside NFL's all-time top 10 kicker's surprise decision

Minnesota Vikings v San Francisco 49ers
Why did Robbie Gould retire? Inside NFL's all-time top 10 kicker's surprise decision

Former San Francisco 49ers kicker Robbie Gould has officially announced his retirement from the NFL. The 41-year-old announced this in an article for The Player's Tribune. In the piece, he went on to say that he was fortunate to play in the NFL for 18 seasons and that not everything lasts forever.

Gould also went on to say that it's time to step away from football and focus all of his attention on his family, which he called his 'favorite team.'

“All good things must come to an end," Gould said. "Great things in life cannot last forever. Everything is temporary ... And now? Lucky me. My favorite team has been waiting for me at home to join them full-time—no contract needed. I’m excited to be more present with my family and to focus all of my attention on what matters to me outside of football."
"For the longest time, my career has naturally filled my schedule, and my wife has taken the reins at home. My oldest is 10 years old, and I’ve been away from him for large chunks of nine years. My younger two boys are eight and five. For most of their lives, Dad hasn’t been fully present. So, without interruption, I’m ready for this next stage of life.

Gould also stated how much time and effort he has put into his NFL career. As a result, he has missed time with his family, which includes his wife and three children. He stated that retirement will allow him to spend more time with his family and start the next chapter of his life.

Gould last played in the NFL in 2022 for the San Francisco 49ers. The team opted not to bring him back for the seventh season and earlier in March. He announced that he would be leaving the 49ers after six seasons.

Pro Football Hall of Fame case for Robbie Gould

Robbie Gould had an impressive collegiate career at Penn State University. He went undrafted in 2005 but signed a free-agent deal with the New England Patriots. He was released before the start of the season and signed with the Baltimore Ravens for a short period of time.

In October 2005, Robbie Gould signed with the Chicago Bears and the opportunity led to an 11-year tenure with the team. In his nearly two-decade-long career, he had an 86.5% success rate on field goals and a 98% success rate on extra points.

His longest career field goal came in 2013 with the Bears, when he converted a 58-yard FG attempt. With 1,207 career points, Gould is the Bears' all-time leading scorer. With 1,961 points in his career, he is presently ranked 10th all-time in NFL history.

While Robbie Gould's career as a kicker is impressive, getting into the Hall of Fame may be a difficult feat. There are only four kickers currently in the Pro Football Hall of Fame which makes it a difficult journey to the gold jacket.

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Edited by Krutik Jain