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Finnegan will play vs. Patriots, hints he could retire

Cortland Finnegan, who may go down as one of the most underrated cornerbacks of the "shutdown" era, could be calling it quits after nine solid NFL seasons.

In an interview with The Miami Herald, the 30-year-old acknowledged the business side of his arrangement in Miami and hinted about the possibility of walking away.

"I would love to come back, but I understand the business side of it too," Finnegan told The Herald, while adding that he'll definitely play on Sunday against the Patriots, his first action in roughly a month. "If you have to walk away from it and it's no more, I can't be mad. I've accomplished every individual goal I want to."

Overlooked in the 2006 NFL Draft, Finnegan went on to play 16 games in all but three of his NFL seasons. He twice recorded five interceptions in one year and earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2008.

Finnegan's best year, though, may have come in 2011 with the Titans where he was universally looked at as one of the league's premier corners alongside Darrelle Revis, Joe Haden and Charles Tillman. In short, he could retire knowing his efforts were appreciated.

Though he might be best remembered for his on-field physicality, a moment that manifested itself in a fist fight with Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson back in 2010, Finnegan should be credited for his work as a mentor to some young talent in St. Louis and Miami. There was a second, much quieter act during his career.

This is why it's not surprising that he seems relaxed with the possibility of playing this season out and then walking away.

"That's one of those things I tell all of these guys," he said. "When you get a chance to do something that you love, and at some point you can just leave on your own terms, it's really fulfilling. I won't look back at my life or my career and be like, 'Ah, I miss this,' because I've done it long enough."

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