Next stop, Hall of Fame: Former Bears DE Julius Peppers retiring

SHARE Next stop, Hall of Fame: Former Bears DE Julius Peppers retiring

Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky dives for the pylon as Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers stops him short last year. | Jeff Haynes/AP photo

ATLANTA — Julius Peppers accepted a hug from commissioner Roger Goodell and congratulations from his fellow Walter Payton Man of the Year Award nominees Friday. Hours after announcing his retirement via video and a Player’s Tribune article, though, the Panthers’ legendary edge rusher decided to no-comment his own retirement. Rather than talk about leaving the game after dominant 17 years, he went about building a playground with his fellow nominees.

He leaves the game, then the way he played it — by letting his talent do the talking.

The 39-year-old is destined to enter the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a Panther. Four of his stellar seasons, though, were spent in Chicago.

In March 2010, the Bears gave him a six-year deal worth $42 million guaranteed and $91.5 million overall to lure Peppers away from the Panthers, who’d chosen him second overall out of nearby North Carolina in 2002. In four seasons with the Bears, Peppers totaled 37 1/2 sacks and three Pro Bowl appearances. The Bears let him leave after going 8-8 in 2013, and he spent the next three seasons as an outside linebacker for the Packers.

He returned home to the Panthers in 2017, totaling 11 sacks. In his final season, he had five.


Allen Robinson and Tarik Cohen talk Bears, Kareem Hunt and a Super Bowl drive

Could the Bears bring back kicker Robbie Gould? We asked him

Peppers finished his career with 159 1/2 sacks, fourth-most in NFL history. He had 21 fumble recoveries and 11 interceptions. He played in 176-straight games to end his career — his last missed game was in 2007.

In a letter published by The Players Tribune, Peppers thanked linebacker Brian Urlacher for “leading by example and showing me the importance of paying attention to detail and the art of calling a game.” To Bears fans, he said he “could not have chosen a better place to make my first stop outside of North Carolina.”

The Latest
La antigua estación de bomberos de La Villita abrirá sus puertas como centro de artes de Yollocalli en el verano de 2025.
Los policías respondieron a una llamada de una persona herida de bala en la cuadra 2800 al sur de la avenida Kedzie a eso de las 6:25 p.m. el domingo y encontraron a un hombre de 23 años que les dijo que había intercambiado disparos con otras personas, dijo la policía. Anteriormente, tres personas fueron baleadas en las proximidades, una de ellas mortalmente.
Colin Hinkle, piloto profesional de drones, se percató que la tinta roja se mezclaba con el agua verde de la fuente a primera hora de la mañana del sábado y vio pintura en aerosol en el suelo en la que se leía: “Gaza está sangrando” y “Alto al genocidio”. “Fue entonces cuando me di cuenta que era una protesta”, dijo Hinkle.
Jimenez, who had been sidelined with a left hamstring strain, looked to be running with discomfort in his first game back from the IL on Sunday.
The Democratic commissioner was known for his advocacy of improving mental health care.