Jul 25, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers guard Carl Nicks (77) and center Jeremy Zuttah (76) practice during training camp at One Buccaneer Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

BREAKING: Carl Nicks "Stepping Away From the Game"

Huge news coming out of One Buc Place at the first day of training camp.

Carl Nicks’ absence has created a lot of buzz as of late, with his “no-show” status at camp being a mystery to many.

Now, it is clear why Nicks wasn’t there: he’s calling it quits, for now.

The Buccaneers have released an official statement on the issue:

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carl Nicks have mutually agreed that they will part ways, ending his tenure with the team. After signing as an unrestricted free agent during the 2012 offseason, Nicks played in nine games for the Buccaneers over the past two seasons.

“I’d like to thank the Buccaneers organization for working with me as I have attempted to get myself back on the football field,” said Nicks. “However, after careful consideration, I have made the decision to step away from the game. This was by no means an easy decision, but I believe that it is what is best for me and my family as well as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.”

The two-time Pro Bowler played in 73 games (70 starts) during a six-year career with the New Orleans Saints (2008-11) and Buccaneers (2012-13).

“I know this has been a difficult time for Carl and his family, but we respect his decision and thank him for his effort in trying to get back on the football field,” said Buccaneers General Manager Jason Licht. “Carl is a very prideful athlete and has been an elite level guard in the league.  We are all disappointed that he will not be a part of this new chapter of Buccaneers football.”

Buccaneers Head Coach Lovie Smith added: “I regret not having the opportunity to work with Carl, but I understand and support his decision to do what is best for him and his family. I know Carl gave this decision a lot of careful consideration and I appreciate his honesty through this process.”


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