Giants’ offensive lineman David Diehl, an 11-year NFL veteran, today announced his retirement.
That is, after his seven-year old daughter Addison “allowed” her father to retire.
“She wants me to play forever,” Diehl said in a statement released by the team announcing the end of his career.
“It’s not very easy for my daughter to talk about me retiring and not playing football,” Diehl said. “The Giants are just as much family to her as they are to me. She’s been going to the games and at seven years old, she understands everything. She understands the game and the players and how important it is to play in the NFL. For her, my stepping away from something she loves as much as I do is not an easy thing.”
Diehl, the last active Giant whose tenure pre-dates quarterback Eli Manning and head coach Tom Coughlin, was a fifth-round draft pick (16th overall) in 2003. A durable, hard-working blue-collar type who did his mid-western roots justice, he missed just 12 games during his 11-year career.
Diehl, who started as a rookie, played every offensive line position in his career except for center. He is a two-time Super bowl champion (XLII and XLVI) and a 2009 Pro Bowl selection.
“I’ve accomplished everything I could possibly dream of as a football player. If in 2003, anyone would have said that Dave Diehl, a fifth-round draft pick out of Illinois, would win two Super Bowls, play in the Pro Bowl and win every single Giant award possible, people would have said you’re crazy. I have a lot to be proud of.”
“When I think of David Diehl what comes to mind is his indomitable spirit,” said Coughlin. “He got the most out of his God-given ability and that’s the best way that you can judge any individual. He took the talent that he had and he used it to the extreme, to the utmost of his ability. What more can you ask of the guy? And he gave great effort. He always gave great effort, there was no doubt about that. You knew exactly what you were getting.”
Diehl, who has done some work in broadcasting, hopes to continue in that field as well as to continue his work in the community.
“I love football,” Diehl said. “I love being in the game, I love watching film, I love doing all of that and I’m going to miss that aspect of it. But I know I’m ready to start the new and next chapter of my life. I’m ready to not only be a bigger part of my daughter’s life, but I’m ready to spread my knowledge and help other people with the game and continue to do stuff throughout our community and charity work and be involved with the New York Giants in any way possible.”