Zach Orr: “I’m Joining the Flock”

The Fanimal Zach Orr: “I’m Joining the Flock”

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Zach Orr has officially retired from the NFL. Again.

That’s right, after retiring earlier this year, then un-retiring, Orr has announced his re-retirement in a piece published in The Players’ Tribune.

In it, Orr attempts to clear the air a bit, dispelling any notions that he only retired in the first place to try to become an unrestricted free agent, as opposed to a restricted free agent. In fact, Orr goes out of his way many times in the piece to praise the Ravens organization, and to reiterate that he wanted to finish his career in Baltimore – just not like this.

The Ravens never tried to talk me into coming out of retirement. In fact, when I informed the team of my initial decision to retire, it was the Ravens who suggested having a press conference with Coach Harbaugh and Ozzie Newsome, and with my teammates and coaches in attendance. They wanted to honor me for what I had given to their franchise, and it was also an opportunity for me to thank all of them for what they had given to me. The Ravens have been 100% supportive throughout the entire process.

Some people thought I was trying to be sneaky — like I retired in January knowing that I would come back after the Ravens hadn’t tendered me. Like I was trying to scam the system to get around being a restricted free agent.

That’s not even the slightest bit true. And that doesn’t even make sense because I didn’t want to become a free agent.

I wanted to be a Raven.

I said as much to Ozzie when I called and told him that I wanted to come back. And he said that he wanted me to be a Raven, too.

“But you have to pass a physical,” he said.

Orr states the he talked to 17 teams total in his attempted comeback bid, but that all found something – though not always the same thing – wrong with his spine that prevented them from signing him.

And so, unable to find a team willing to take a chance on him, Orr has decided to hang them up for good. And he’s at peace with that.

Today, I’m officially retiring from professional football … again. And I’m even more at peace this time around because the teams have spoken. If there was any way I could come back, I would.

Now, I know that’s not possible.

So, with that said, I want to give a shout-out to my family. I love y’all so much. You’ve always stood by me.

In a final nod to Baltimore, Orr declares to Ravens fans that he’ll be one of us now:

And lastly, shout out to the best fans in the world. I’m gonna miss that sea of purple on Sundays. I’m gonna miss the electricity of M&T Bank Stadium. I’m gonna miss seeing everybody around town wearing their Ravens gear on Purple Fridays.

And you know what? I’m one of you guys now. I’m joining the flock. I’ll be wearing my purple on Friday and rooting the Ravens to victory on Sunday.

Congratulations on your decision Zach. Ravens Nation is certainly glad that this medical issue was discovered when it was. And though we’ll miss watching you on the field on Sundays, it’s great to know that you’re with us in spirit.

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About Derek Arnold

RSR/ESR Senior Editor. Derek was born and raised in the Baltimore area, and still lives here with his wife and son. He’s a graduate of UMBC and has been a lifelong Baltimore sports fan. Derek tells anybody who asks that he has the best job in the world. More from Derek Arnold

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