Former rushing champ DeMarco Murray announces retirement from NFL at age of 30

Former Offensive Player of the Year DeMarco Murray is walking away from football at the age of 30, the running back announced Friday on ESPN's NFL Live. 

Murray, who was released by the Tennessee Titans after the 2017 season, leaves the game early, but having spent seven years as a highly productive running back. 

"I still got it. I can still play this game, but I think maybe it's time to move on," Murray said on ESPN. 

DeMarco was in the studio as part of the panel on ESPN, so it would hardly be surprising to see him land a studio gig immediately following his departure from the league.

Murray was drafted out of Oklahoma in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Cowboys. He spent two pretty productive years in Dallas' backfield sharing carries with Felix Jones (Jerry Jones really likes Arkansas running backs) before bursting on the scene with a 1,121-yard and nine-touchdown season in 2013.

He would follow that up with an absolute monster 2014, earning an All-Pro nod as well as OPOY recognition when he rushed for 1,845 yards and 13 touchdowns on an absurd 345 carries. All three statistics led the league. 

Murray then became a controversial figure of sorts for the Cowboys, because Dallas declined to reward the running back's huge season with a big contract in free agency. He became the prize of a bizarre running back offseason for Chip Kelly's Eagles -- they dealt star LeSean McCoy to Buffalo, tried to sign Frank Gore and eventually brought in Ryan Mathews and Murray.

But Kelly's offense was a horrible fit for Murray, and he struggled coming off a season with a ton of carries, rushing for less than 750 yards in lone season (2015) with Philly. 

After Kelly was fired and Howie Roseman took back power in Philadelphia, Murray was shipped out in a trade to the Titans, where he bounced back with a 1,287-yard season as the feature back in Mike Mularkey's exotic smashmouth. 

Last year, Murray split carries with Derrick Henry, who the Titans took with a second-round pick out of Alabama in the 2016 NFL Draft. Murray was the starter, but it was clear Henry was the more productive back and was set to become the Titans feature runner this year, hence the decision by Tennessee to cut him loose. 

There certainly could have been opportunities for Murray in 2018 -- perhaps somewhere like Buffalo -- and it's possible the door hasn't closed on his career completely, should an NFL team deal with an injury early in training camp or even during preseason. But it would appear Murray is the latest reminder of how short and fleeting the career can be for an NFL running back. 

CBS Sports Senior Writer

Will Brinson joined CBS Sports in 2010 and enters his seventh season covering the NFL for CBS. He previously wrote for FanHouse along with myriad other Internet sites. A North Carolina native who lives... Full Bio

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