London Fletcher to announce retirement today

By
Updated: December 18, 2013
London Fletcher

Washington Redskins ILB London Fletcher will announce his retirement today, effective at the end of the 2013 season, in which only two games remain for his team.

Fletcher, 38, has played in the NFL since signing with the St. Louis Rams as an undrafted free agent in 1998. In his first season Fletcher won the Rams rookie of the year award.  He played four seasons with the Rams, including their 1999 Super Bowl season in which Fletcher became famous for making the game-saving tackle on the last play to preserve a narrow Rams victory over the underdog Tennessee Titans. In 2000 Fletcher set the Rams franchise record for tackles in a season.

In 2002, Fletcher signed with the Buffalo Bills as a free agent and promptly set the franchise record for tackles in a season there, too. He remained in Buffalo for five season before signing with the Redskins.

Fletcher signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Redskins in 2007, inking a 5-year $25 million contract. In 2008 Fletcher became defensive captain of the team and in 2010 was named to his first Pro Bowl. Fletcher was named Washington’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2011.

Despite his size, Fletcher made the switch from middle linebacker to inside linebacker in a 3-4 defense in 2010 and immediately had one of the best seasons of his career, making the Pro Bowl for the second straight season and intercepting a pass in that game for the NFC.

In the first decade of the 21st century [2000-2009] Fletcher made more tackles than any player in the NFL and he led the NFL in tackles in 2011. In December 2012 Fletcher was named NFC Defensive Player of the Month.

Fletcher owns the record for most consecutive games played by a linebacker, most consecutive starts by a  linebacker and he is first overall in consecutive starts by a player currently in the league.

Though he did not appear in a Pro Bowl until 2010, Fletcher was a Pro Bowl alternate 11 times.

Fletcher and his wife have two children, a son and a daughter.