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Rams' Donald calls time on Hall of Fame career

<a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/players/27541/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Aaron Donald;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Aaron Donald</a> of the <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/teams/la-rams/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Los Angeles Rams;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Los Angeles Rams</a> reacts following a fourth down stop during the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LVI against the <a class="link " href="https://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/teams/cincinnati/" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Cincinnati Bengals;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Cincinnati Bengals</a> at SoFi Stadium on February 13, 2022 in Inglewood, California. Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFP (Rob Carr)

Three-times NFL Defensive Player of the Year Aaron Donald announced on Friday that he was retiring from the sport after ten seasons.

The Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle, an eight-time All Pro selection won the Super Bowl with the Rams in the 2021 season.

He was drafted by the Rams, then the St.Louis Rams, in the first round in 2014.

"Throughout my career, I have given my everything to football both mentally and physically - 365 days a year was dedicated to becoming the best possible player I could be," Donald said in a statement.

"I respected this game like no other and I'm blessed to be able to conclude my NFL career with the same franchise that drafted me. Not many people get drafted to a team, win a World Championship with that team and retire with that team. I do not, and will not, take that for granted," he said.

"I would like to thank St. Louis for the love and support during my first two years in the league as a St. Louis Ram, and through my eight years as a Los Angeles Ram. I would like to thank Los Angeles for the love and support throughout my career as well. California has become home to me and my family, and you all made it extra special," he said.

Donald is one of only three players to win the Defensive Player of the Year on three occasions, along with Lawrence Taylor and J.J. Watt.

He was selected to the Pro Bowl in all ten years he played in the league, a record matched only by former Detroit Lions running back Barry Sanders.

"We are so grateful for Aaron's dedication to greatness and for leading our franchise on and off the field for the past decade," Rams owner Stan Kroenke said.

"He has left his mark on generations of football fans and his accomplishments, coupled with his work ethic and passion, continue to inspire his teammates, coaches and athletes across the globe. It is a privilege to have witnessed one of the greatest players of all time and we are proud that Aaron Donald will forever be part of NFL history as a member of the Rams," he added.

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