Chris Kelsay retirement: Bills DE exits game after 10 seasons

Rick Stewart

Kelsay spent his entire career with the Bills.

After 10 years with the same team, Chris Kelsay is leaving the NFL.

Kelsay and the Buffalo Bills announced his retirement Wednesday. The defensive end was drafted in the second round of the 2003 NFL Draft and played 147 games with the Bills:

"Chris has been the consummate professional throughout his career and we will miss him," said general manager Buddy Nix. "He always gave 100 percent, regardless of the situation and regardless of the score. He did everything with class and was an excellent team leader. ..."

Kelsay was an every Sunday starter for the Bills from 2005 through the 2011 season. His best professional season came in 2009 when he recorded five sacks, a forced fumble and 62 total tackles.

Kelsay provided consistency on the Bills' defensive line. He recorded at least two sacks in every season except his rookie year, when he played in 16 games but didn't start one.

Brian Galliford of Buffalo Rumblings said it was the right time for Kelsay to make the retirement official:

After his 2012 season ended with a neck injury and a new coaching staff with a new defense came in, it was apparent that the time was ripe for the Bills and Kelsay to part ways after a decade. The well-respected multi-year team captain decided to call it a career rather than pursue employment elsewhere. Let's be sure to give a tip of the cap to a career Bill that gave the franchise his all for a decade, shall we?

In 147 games, Kelsay had 32 1/2 sacks, eight forced fumbles, six fumble recoveries and 442 total tackles.

Kelsay still had two years left on his contract. The team will say about $5 million against the 2013 salary cap because of the retirement.

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