The 29-year-old Nicks played six NFL seasons with the New Orleans Saints and the Buccaneers. Tampa Bay signed Nicks to a $47.5 million contract with $31 million guaranteed in the summer of 2011. Injuries and illness limited the former All-Pro guard to just nine games in two seasons in Tampa Bay. Nicks played just two games in 2013 after contracting a staph infection in the Bucs' locker room.
Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune has a statement from Nicks: "After careful consideration, I have made the decision to step away from the game. This was by no means an easy decision, but I believe that it is what is best for me and my family as well as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers."
Mike Garafolo notes that Nicks' decision not to use the word "retire" in his statement might not be accidental:
@greggrosenthal My hunch is he didn't say retire because that would mean he'd lose all rights to his gtd $— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) July 25, 2014
More: The Ray Rice fallout
Nicks made the Pro Bowl in 2010 and 2011, was named to the AP All-Pro second team in 2010, and the All-Pro first team in 2011.
- Alex Hampl