With each pause and each tear, the difficulty in the decision was clear.
For Donald Driver, this was not easy. But on Wednesday at Lambeau Field, the Green Bay Packers wide receiver – a larger-than-life figure in Wisconsin and beyond – said goodbye.
"Jesus Christ has given me the wisdom," said Driver, pausing for several moments, choking back tears, "to understand when things must come to an end."
And with that, one of the most beloved players in Packers history rode off into the sunset. The 14-year veteran went out with a bang, too. Driver didn't just speak in front of teammates, his general manager and the team president. Hundreds of fans packed the Lambeau Field Atrium. They waited hours to get into the stadium and then spilled up a stairway into the second level when the doors finally opened.
In the first row sat Green Bay mayor Jim Schmitt and Wisconsin governor Scott Walker. Both had gifts. Driver was given his own street in Green Bay ("Donald Driver Way"), his own "Donald Driver Day" by Walker, a key to the city and the well-known statue outside Titletown Brewery will be refurbished with Driver's name and number.
Yes, it was an emotional day at Lambeau, one that further signified just how much Driver means to the team, the state and the fan base.
Donald Driver leaves the Packers in style
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel | Feb 6