After an injury last season, Minnesota Vikings right tackle Phil Loadholt will announce his retirement today.
Throughout the Minnesota Vikings offseason, there have been a lot of questions to who will be the starters along the offensive line as well as who will make the final 53 man roster. With some of the offensive line on the wrong side of thirty or coming off devastating injuries, it was the position battle that was the hardest to gauge.
In the offseason, the Minnesota Vikings signed former Cincinnati Bengals right tackle Andre Smith. Immediately there were questions to if Smith would be replacing long time Vikings right tackle Phil Loadholt.
Loadholt is coming off an achilles tear from last season. For a man that is 6’8″ and 343 pounds, that is a difficult injury to come back from. Loadholt is now 30 years old and has lost his quickness.
Early this morning, NFL reporter Adam Schefter reported the news first.
Phil Loadholt has let team officials know that he plans to retire today. Loadholt has most likely realized that he does not have what it takes to make the final roster.
As we reported about a month ago, Loadholt was reported to have lost a step during Minnesota Vikings organized team activities. Reporters mentioned multiple plays in which second year defensive end Danielle Hunter was blowing past Loadholt.
Loadholt spent his college career at Oklahoma. He was the leader of the offensive line unit that led the way for running back Demarco Murray.
Loadholt was drafted by the Vikings in the second round at pick 54 in 2009. He has played his whole professional career with the Vikings. Loadholt stepped into the starting role at right tackle from day one. That is something that you do not see very often from offensive line rookies anymore. Loadholt was a big part of the leading the way for Vikings running back Adrian Peterson’s prime years.
Loadholt gave the Minnesota Vikings all he had. He will be remembered as one of the best right tackles in Vikings history. Thanks for everything Big Phil!