The NFL’s most famous neckbeard may not be on sidelines anymore. Yes, Dallas Cowboys backup quarterback Kyle Orton has informed the team that he plans to retire.
If he retires, Orton will be forced to pay back $3 million of the $5 million signing bonus he received in 2012, and will also lose out on the $3 million in salary he is due for the 2014 season. So, the real question is whether or not Orton can actually afford to retire, given how much money he’ll be surrendering if he does.
The Cowboys would like Orton to return and view him as one of the best backup quarterbacks in the NFL. He’s only 31 years old and there has been no indication as to why he wants to hang ’em up.
Orton was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL Draft out of Purdue. He spent four years with the team, playing in 33 games, before being traded to the Denver Broncos as part of the deal that sent Jay Cutler to Chicago. He spent parts of three seasons with the Broncos, part of the 2011 season with the Kansas City Chiefs and has been with the Cowboys since the 2012 season.
For his career, Orton has completed 58.5 percent of his passes for 15,019 yards, with 83 touchdowns and 59 interceptions. In 75 career games, he has a quarterback rating of 79.9.
The NFL certainly won’t be the same without Orton, whose photos from off and on the field were always entertaining. But if he has lost his passion for the game, then it is obviously time for him to retire.