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Lions Kicker Jason Hanson Retires

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(credit: 97.1 The Ticket)

(credit: 97.1 The Ticket)

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DETROIT (CBS Detroit) The Detroit Lions announced on their website Thursday afternoon that longtime kicker Jason Hanson, 43, is retiring after 21 years on the team.

“A heel injury that surfaced last season and continued to trouble him in the offseason as he prepared to play a 22nd season ultimately made Hanson make up his mind to retire,” the Lions’ Mike O’Hara wrote.

Hanson said he was afraid if he returned he would be playing in a “compromised” way.

What will he do in retirement? Here’s a clue: Hanson talked to 97.1 The Ticket in February at SportsFest, where he talked about football and his other great love, golf.

In fact, with his slight build, he said most people who meet him assumed he was a golfer and not necessarily a football player.

“A lot of people when they hear I’m a professional athlete, but don’t think football and don’t know me, they think I’m a golfer,” Hanson said at the time. “They haven’t seen me play obviously… I wish I could play golf,” he said, about the sport most people assume he plays because he’s not built like the stereotypical Mack truck player. “

He added he does play golf, with a 7 handicap.

The oldest active player in the NFL, placekicker Jason Hanson spent his entire career with the Lions. He has booted 17 game-winning field goals in his career; eight in regulation and nine in overtime.

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