Foster announces retirement from NFL

Updated: 

Miami Dolphins running back Arian Foster has called it quits after eight seasons in the NFL.

Foster was a four-time Pro Bowler and led the NFL in rushing in 2010 but his body just cannot handle the physical demands of American football.

The 30-year-old made the announcement on Monday, releasing a statement on Twitter.

"This game has been everything to me ... my therapy, my joy, my solace and my enemy," Foster wrote via Uninterrupted.com. "I've learned to love every facet of this game, from the peak of accomplishment to the gutter of criticism. And it all makes the ride worthwhile.

"I've been fortunate enough to play many successful years in this league. I've given a lot to this game and given up a lot for it. But it has returned to me more than I could have ever asked for.

"Faceless gladiators have been shuffled in and out of this arena for decades and I'm proud to have taken part in that legacy. My father always said, 'You'll know when it's time to walk away.' It has never been more clear than right now. I'm walking away with peace. I know it's not commonplace to do it midseason, but my body just can't take the punishment this game asks for any longer. ... Every athlete would love to go out as a Super Bowl MVP, riding off into the sunset with the crowd cheering their name.

"Unfortunately, life has other plans and they're usually opposite the imagination. But that imagination got me this far and I could not be prouder of the things my teammates and I accomplished in this game."

Signed by the Houston Texans in 2009 as an undrafted rookie from Tennessee, Foster's career was often plagued by injuries. He played in all 16 games just twice, as the NFL's rushing leader with 1,616 yards in 2010 and then running for 1,424 yards in 2012. He also led the NFL in rushing touchdowns in both seasons. 

A hamstring injury caused him to miss three games in 2011, but he still ran for 1,224 yards and 10 touchdowns. A back injury during training camp in 2013 limited him to eight games that season. He came back to run for 1,246 yards and eight touchdowns in 13 games in 2014. 

Foster's 2015 campaign never really got on track, playing in just four games before a ruptured Achilles tendon ended his season. The Texans released him in March and he signed with the Dolphins in July. But his career reboot was halted by a groin injury in a week two game against the New England Patriots. He saw only six touches since returning week six.

Foster retires with 6,527 rushing yards and 54 rushing touchdowns to go with 255 receptions for 2,346 yards and 14 scores.