Longest Tenured Baltimore Ravens Sam Koch Leaves The Flock Tearfully as he Moves On from The NFL Life

Published 05/21/2022, 11:42 AM EDT

Punter Sam Koch of the Baltimore Ravens announced his retirement from the NFL in a tearful press conference. The Ravens shared a clip of the conference on their official Twitter handle.

Koch’s announcement brings to an end 16 years of illustrious playing career with the Ravens during which Koch revolutionised punting.

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The end to the Sam Koch era in Baltimore

Sam Koch’s retirement will be the end of an era at the Baltimore Ravens. At the press conference, Koch began by saying, “Today I’m retiring from playing professional football.”

 

In the brief clip released on Twitter, Koch said he was grateful to the Ravens and its people for taking “a chance on this unknown punter.” Speaking from a 9-page speech, Koch broke down multiple times while making his announcement. “I swear I practised this a lot at home,” Koch said.

Baltimore Ravens on Twitter: “Today I’m retiring from playing professional football.” https://t.co/HEyJdY2RWm” / Twitter

He also said the announcement was “very hard” and called the Ravens’ front office “the best front office in all of sports.”

The man behind the legacy

Koch played for the Baltimore Ravens for his entire 16-year career. They drafted him in the sixth round of the 2006 draft, from the University of Nebraska. He has been the longest-tenured player in Raven’s history, playing for 16 years out of its 26-year existence.

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Koch has developed a plethora of punting variations, which have revolutionized punting in the NFL. Many of his kicks caused problems for returners to make a clean catch. These have led to him being recognized as an innovator among punters and punting coaches.

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Koch’s long career ensured that he came to hold multiple records for the franchise, including the most career punt yards (52,868 yards), and the longest career punt at 74 yards. He also has the highest career yards per punt average (45.3 yards) as well as the most games played (256).

Koch’s decision to retire was made during the 2022 draft when the management notified him they were looking to draft a punter. He said, “At that point, I think I knew my time was over and it’s OK. I’m very excited for my next chapter in life..” 

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This season, Koch remains with the Ravens as a special teams consultant to mentor 2022 draftee and rookie punter Jordan Stout.

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Prithwiraj Gupta

131 articles

Prithwiraj Gupta is an NFL author at EssentiallySports. He has completed his Master's in History from Pune University. The contact aspect of the NFL made him interested in the sport.

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