Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 5/22/13
Sometimes it is OK to be selfish in life. Such is the case for Bears fans. After the team failed to reach an agreement with perennial Pro Bowl linebacker Brian Urlacher it would be hard to imagine No. 54 donning any uniform other than the orange and navy of the Chicago Bears. That nightmare for Bears fans will not come to reality, as Urlacher took to Twitter on Wednesday to announce his retirement from the NFL after 13 seasons -- all with the Bears.“Although I could continue playing, I’m not sure I would bring a level of performance or passion that is up to my standard,” Urlacher said in his statement.When Urlacher and the Bears could not come to terms on a new deal this off-season, the Bears great called the Bears offer a “slap in the face”. The break-up appeared to be an ugly one and one that would surely end up with Urlacher wearing a different uniform when the 2013 season starts. The lasting image of Urlacher in a Bears uniform was of him on the sidelines for the final four games of the season nursing a hamstring injury.Now, at least for the moment, Bears fans can erase that image and replace it with 13 great seasons. Sure Urlacher came up short of bringing a Super Bowl back to Chicago, but that is not what Urlacher’s legacy will be. For 182 games (180 starts) No. 54 gave his heart and soul to the Chicago Bears and their fans. He left everything he had out on the field every single Sunday. The latter statement is one Urlacher iterated on Twitter.“I am proud to say that I gave all of you everything I had every time I took the field,” he said. “I will miss this great game, but I leave with no regrets.”Urlacher leaves the game as one of four linebackers with 40-plus sacks (41.5) and 20-plus interceptions (22) in NFL history. He finished his career with 1,779 tackles, 109 tackles for loss, 11 forced fumbles and 16 fumble recoveries. Some of the many accolades Urlacher racked up were eight Pro Bowls, NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year (2000) and NFL Defensive Player of the Year (2005). Two months ago Bears fans were left wondering what team Urlacher would end up with. Destined for the Hall of Fame, the only question left to be answered is will Urlacher be a first-ballot Hall of Famer.TRAVIS DAVID is a contributor for FOOTBALL NATION and can be reached at tdavid021@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @Tdavid_21.
PLAYERS: Brian Urlacher
TEAMS: Chicago Bears
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