Two weeks ago in Ft. Myers, Tim Wakefield said goodbye to the Red Sox after 17 years in Boston. On Thursday, Jason Varitek, who's been with the Sox since 1997, will walk away from the game in what will certainly be another emotional ceremony.
Neither Wakefield nor Tek were ready to retire, but time and circumstances forced their hand. In the end, they made the right decision (or finally just accepted reality) and will now move on with the next phase of their lives.
I bring this up because today at Children's Hospital in Boston, Mary Paoletti caught up with Kevin Faulk, who was visiting with some young patients during this, his 13th NFL offseason.
When the topic of Faulk future came up, he gave a familiar answer:
"Ill tell you this much: My decision is not going to be based on solely me, he said. So, thats one thing I have to weigh in. But at the same time, Ive played a lot of football. If it doesnt happen to work out for me later, hey, it doesnt. Im blessed, Im happy, I thank God for everything, but at the same time, I know what I love to do and if it happens, it happens.
Kevin, it's not going to happen.
With Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen likely ready for expanded roles, Danny Woodhead under contract for another two years and BenJarvus Green-Ellis hopefully back in town on a respectable multi-year deal, there's no role for Faulk on next year's team. There was barely a role on this year's team.
The time has come to walk away, and while we can understand why he didn't make an impromptu retirement announcement at the Children's Hospital, it's fair to guess that Faulk will eventually come to the same conclusion and face the same reality as Wake and Tek, and hold a retirement press conference of his own this summer at Gillette.