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Former Falcons WR Roddy White announces retirement

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  • By Jeremy Bergman NFL.com
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The most prolific receiver in Atlanta Falcons history is officially calling it quits.

Just over one year after being cut by the Falcons, Roddy White announced his retirement Friday in a series of tweets.

"I would like to thank Arthur Blank and the (Falcons) organization for a great 11 years. The city of Atlanta I love y'all so much," White explained. "I'm officially retired from football and welcome the second phase of my life."

That second phase will be as a high school football coach, as White will reportedly join the coaching staff at John's Creek High School in John's Creek, Georgia.

White will hand in his papers as the franchise leader in nearly every receiving category. Drafted 27th overall by Atlanta in 2005, the wideout finished his career with 808 receptions, 10,863 yards and 63 touchdowns in 171 games over 11 seasons. White was named first-team All-Pro in 2010, when he led the league with 115 receptions and recorded a career-high 1,389 receiving yards.

While, for the bulk of his career, White was a franchise fixture and Matt Ryan's most reliable and athletic target, his exit from the Falcons was less than sanctimonious. With Julio Jones and even Leonard Hankerson taking increasingly more targets away from the aging White in 2015, the veteran wideout made his displeasure known.

"For me, at the end of the day, I want to catch passes," White said at the time. "I'm not out here just (expletive) around just to sit around to just block (expletive) people all day. It's not what I want to do. I've contributed to offenses for this franchise for the last nine, 10 years. It always bothers me when I go out and don't catch any balls in a game because it hasn't happened in so long."

White finished the season with 43 receptions, 506 yards and just one score, and was cut in March. In free agency, the receiver couldn't find a market for his expensive services and instead continued to throw slights at Kyle Shanahan and his offense.

"They had a role for me coming into the season, and I feel it wasn't told to me prior to the season," White told CBS Atlanta in 2016. "I'm completely fine if someone sits me down and says, 'This is what we want you to do', but I didn't get fully where they were going with me. ... After that I sat down with (offensive coordinator) Kyle (Shanahan) and I thought things would change, and they didn't change."

The year after White left, the Falcons' offense put up franchise-best numbers and the team made its first Super Bowl since 1999.

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