Former Houston Texans cornerback and 15-year league veteran Johnathan Joseph has officially announced his retirement from the NFL.
In a statement via his Twitter, Joseph said the following:
"Today I retire from the NFL. In the summer of 2006, I signed my first NFL contract with the Cincinnati Bengals. Fifteen years later, I can say I accomplished my childhood goal of making it to the NFL. I will never forget as a kid telling my father I wanted to be in the NFL."
Joseph entered the league a first-round pick by the Bengals in 2006, going on to play 67 regular-season games, including 58 starts, for Cincy. The South Carolina product then headed to the Texans in free agency and was one of their best acquisitions to date.
A Pro Bowler during both of his first two seasons in Texas, Joseph was a key part of arguably the best Texans team so far throughout that stretch. For the next seven seasons, Joseph continued as a vital and perennially underrated starter for Houston until they agreed to part-ways in 2020.
According to the Texans, upon his departure Joseph held the franchise records for "interceptions (17), passes defensed (118), interception return yards (410) and interceptions returned for touchdowns (four) while ranking tied for third in games played (133) and fifth in total tackles (482)."
Joseph finished his career with brief stints in Arizona and then Tennessee in 2020.
He is currently second in NFL history in total defended passes with 200, just three behind Hall-of-Famer Champ Bailey.
A consummate professional both on and off the field, Joseph was a leader by example at all times. Never one to create headlines or a stir publicly, Joseph was as consistent a player as you're likely to find. His longevity at a position as physically and mentally demanding as a cornerback is extremely rare, and speaks volumes about his ability.
Whatever he endeavors to do next, he will likely succeed. And maybe it is just a matter of time before Joseph can don the famous gold jacket in Canton.
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