At a press conference, the San Francisco 49ers described Patrick Willis as one of the best linebackers in the history of the National Football League. His decision to retire was described as “bittersweet.” When Willis approached the podium, he fought back tears. The seven-time Pro Bowler said saying goodbye was difficult.
“I knew there would be a day I’d leave, and I always told myself that I wanted it to be on my terms,” Willis said. The 30-year-old said his body, more specifically his feet, could not keep up with the rigors of the NFL. “There’s something about these feet. And those are what made me who I am. They had you all saying, ‘Wow, where’d he come from?’ he said. “I know I no longer have it in these feet to go out there and give you guys that kind of ‘Wow.’”