Found January 01, 2013 on Fox Sports Kansas City:
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Veteran offensive lineman Ryan Lilja, who helped block for Peyton Manning during the Colts' Super Bowl-winning 2006 season, announced his retirement Monday. Lilja said he was going to "hang it up" after the Kansas City Chiefs finished a 2-14 season with a 38-3 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday. Lilja had played guard his entire career until injuries along the Chiefs' line forced him to play center the majority of this season. "I'm ready to shut it down and move on with my life," said Lilja, who grew up in Kansas City and starred for Kansas State before signing with the Chiefs as an undrafted free agent in 2004. Undersized by NFL standards, the 6-foot-2, 285-pound Lilja was waived by the Chiefs and quickly claimed by Indianapolis, where he became one of Manning's most trusted blockers. He played in 11 games the year the Colts beat the Chicago Bears in the Super Bowl. He returned to Kansas City three years ago, and would have become a free agent this offseason. "I think I'm done," Lilja said while cleaning out his locker Monday. "I've made a ton of dynamite relationships, but I think it's time I shut it down." The 31-year-old Lilja said he had a feeling before the season that this would be his last, and a series of injuries - including a nagging back injury that forced him to miss a game - served to reassure him that walking away was in his best interest. He wound up starting 104 of 111 career games over eight seasons. "Physically, you kind of hit a wall," said Lilja, who started 104 of 111 games over eight seasons. "Your body tells you to start thinking about it." Lilja had never played center until this year, when a season-ending injury to Rodney Hudson moved him to the middle of the Chiefs' patchwork offensive line. Lilja had his struggles, too, with several botched snaps and a few cases of costly miscommunication. Still, his willingness to take on a new role impressed his teammates. "I can't say enough about how professional he is," right tackle Eric Winston said. "This organization is going to miss him and the guys in the locker room are going to miss him."
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Did Chiefs owner contact Peyton Manning about GM Scott Pioli’s future?

  “Save our Chiefs”, a group that was established to try to put pressure on the Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt to make drastic changes, has issued a statement on their Facebook and Twitter account that might be very interesting to Kansas City fans and all potential head coaching candidates regarding the status of [...]

Scott Pioli could still lose his job

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli is still under review and could still end up being fired. Also, Chiefs formalize what I pointed out earlier – GM Scott Pioli under review. could still be let go pending coaching search — Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) December 31, 2012 It sounds like whoever becomes the new head coach of the...

Romeo Crennel fired in Kansas City

Following a season of on-field failures and off-field tragedy, the Kansas City Chiefs have parted ways with head coach Romeo Crennel. The team announced that Crennel was fired Monday after a 2-14 season that will have the Chiefs picking first in April's NFL draft. In a team-released statement, Chiefs owner Clark Hunt said "no final determination" has been made on...

Head coach Romeo Crennel fired by Kansas City Chiefs following dreadful season

The Kansas City Chiefs suffered a humiliating 2-14 season in 2012 and announced on Dec. 31 they have fired head coach Romeo Crennel in response to it. General manager Scott Pioli still has his job though, but he could be the next to go. Crennel was in charge of the NFL club for just one season and he leaves it after tying the franchise record for fewest wins during a season. This...

NFL Coaching News Black Monday: Kansas City Chiefs Fire Romeo Crennel, no word on GM Scott Pioli

The Kansas City Chiefs have fired head coach Romeo Crennel after just one season. The Chiefs finished with a 2-14 overall record and secured the first overall pick of the 2013 NFL Draft, a franchise first. The Chiefs struggled all season long and finished the season ranked 32nd in passing offense, a mark achieved through poor quarterback play. In his career, Crennel has posted a...

Kansas City Chiefs: Four Questions

1. How will the Chiefs fix their quarterback problem?Since a strong debut season with Kansas City (3,116 yards, 27 TD, 7 INT) in 2010 that saw the team reach the playoffs, Matt Cassel's play has dropped off significantly, as he's thrown just 16 touchdowns against 21 interceptions in a combined 18 games the past two seasons. Cassel struggles with decision-making under pressure...

Chiefs CEO Hunt takes on bigger role in franchise

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) Clark Hunt is regarded as an intensely private man, someone who prefers to operate behind the scenes and away from the spotlight that comes with owning an NFL franchise. In some ways, that's about to change. Hunt fired coach Romeo Crennel on Monday as part of a shakeup of the entire structure of a franchise that his father, the late Lamar Hunt, founded...

Report: Andy Reid will interview with the Chiefs today, Cardinals Thursday

According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen via Adam Schefter, Andy Reid will interview with the Kansas City Chiefs today for their open head coaching job before he heads to Arizona to interview with the Cardinals on Thursday.Plot thickens: Before arriving in Arizona tonight, Andy Reid will interview today in Philadelphia with the KC Chiefs, via @mortreport.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter...

Andy Reid to interview with the Kansas City Chiefs

Yesterday, it was reported by multiple ESPN writers, that Andy Reid was close to signing with the Arizona Cardinals. Today, all of that has changed again. ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting that before flying to Arizona, former Eagles coach Andy Reid will interview with the Kansas City Chiefs. Plot thickens: Before arriving in Arizona tonight, Andy Reid will interview today in Philadelphia...

Turk Visits Crennel

In what was widely speculated overnight, the Kansas City Chiefs officially fired Head Coach Romeo Crennel Monday morning.

Andy Reid Will Interview With The Chiefs Before Meeting With The Cardinals

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reports that Andy Reid will interview with the Kansas City Chiefs on Wednesday afternoon and then fly to Arizona to meet with the Cardinals on Thursday, via Adam Schefter. If Kansas City is in fact interested in Reid, it would be a pretty clear indication that current GM Scott Pioli is not on as stable of ground as it seemed. Reid would almost certainly...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.