Ryan Fitzpatrick, the enigmatic quarterback out of Harvard who brought his “FitzMagic” to the NFL for nine teams spanning 17 seasons, revealed his retirement Thursday, a source confirmed to ESPN.
Fitzpatrick, popular throughout his career with his teammates and known for his prolific beard, made the announcement in a text message to his former teammates.
Fitzpatrick, 39, suffered a season-ending hip subluxation in the second quarter of the Washington Commanders’ season-opening loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in September and had to undergo arthroscopic surgery.
He had signed a one-year, $10 million deal with Washington in March 2021. In 17 seasons, Fitzpatrick started 147 games, throwing for 34,990 yards and 223 touchdowns with 169 interceptions.
He started his career as a seventh-round draft pick of the St. Louis Rams in 2005, and he also played for the Cincinnati Bengals, Buffalo Bills, Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans, New York Jets, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins and Washington during his career.
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He started games for all nine teams, which is an NFL record among quarterbacks.
Fitzpatrick, however, never made the playoffs during his career.
Fitzpatrick spent the most years of his career and started the most games in Buffalo, going 20-33 in 53 regular-season starts over four seasons with the Bills from 2009 to 2012. In 2010, despite not beginning the year as the starting quarterback, Fitzpatrick threw for 3,000 yards, becoming the first Bills quarterback to do that in a season since J.P. Losman in 2006.
He ultimately was unable to latch on as a long-term starter with the Bills, enduring a nine-year stretch of losing seasons. In his Bills career, he threw 80 touchdown passes and had 64 interceptions.
While his time in Buffalo is long gone, Fitzpatrick has persisted a favorite among Bills fans. He attended the team’s AFC wild-card playoff victory over the New England Patriots in January, watching from the stands and posing shirtless in freezing temperatures and strong wind.
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