TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -Mike Alstott's long run with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers may be over.
Amid speculation that the six-time Pro Bowl selection is set to announce his retirement after 12 seasons, the team said the 34-year-old fullback will discuss his plans for the future during a Thursday news conference at the club's training facility.
Alstott spent the 2007 season on injured reserve with a neck problem that he said was not related to a career-threatening injury that required surgery in 2003. At the time, he stopped short of saying he would never play again.
``It is what it is. The facts are the facts. I can't put on the helmet and jersey this year,'' he said during an emotional news conference during training camp at Disney World.
``One thing is, you don't mess with the neck. There are always situations where it can be worsened by playing. It is a severe injury and it's a situation you don't mess with.''
A 248-pound fullback better known for his bruising running style rather than his blocking, Alstott is Tampa Bay's career touchdown leader with 71, including a franchise-best 58 on the ground.
He was selected to play in the Pro Bowl six consecutive seasons from 1997-2002, however his role in the offense diminished dramatically after coach Jon Gruden arrived in Tampa Bay six seasons ago.
In 12 seasons, he's rushed for 5,088 yards, second on the Bucs' all-time list. He also has 305 receptions for 2,284 yards and 13 TDs.
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