nfl notebook

Vince Wilfork announces his retirement from the NFL — in a sponsored tweet

Vince Wilfork has left the NFL behind, announcing his retirement in a tweet with a video barbecue commercial.
Vince Wilfork has left the NFL behind, announcing his retirement in a tweet with a video barbecue commercial. Patric Schneider/Associated Press file

Former New England and Houston defensive tackle Vince Wilfork announced his retirement from the NFL in a barbecue commercial Monday, a fitting farewell for a big guy who loved to eat.

Wilfork tweeted a video showing him un-taping his ankles, hanging up his cleats, and grabbing grilling tongs. The video then shows the 35-year-old defender dancing, cooking ribs, and smoking a cigar while wearing his trademark overalls.

‘‘No more cleats,’’ he says. ‘‘I'm moving on to smoke meats, fellas. Peace out. I'm outta here. Later.’’

The video ends by noting that ‘‘Vince’s Farewell Tailgate’’ will take place Sept. 7 in New England. The defending Super Bowl champions open the season that Thursday night against Kansas City.


Wilfork’s next stop could be the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. He certainly has enough numbers and rings to merit first-ballot consideration.

Wilfork was drafted by New England in 2004 out of Miami and anchored the Pats’ defensive line for 11 seasons. He was named to five Pro Bowls and helped the Patriots win two Super Bowls.

‘‘Congrats on a #HOF career bro... Now you can sit back and barbeque all you want,’’ retired NFL receiver and fellow Miami Hurricanes star Reggie Wayne tweeted.

Wilfork played 13 NFL seasons, including the last two in Houston. He said earlier this summer he was contemplating retirement after the Texans declined to offer him a new contract.

The Texans recognized Wilfork’s retirement on Twitter, saying ‘‘Thanks for the memories @wilfork75. We'll always have this.’’ The caption came with a photo of Wilfork wearing overalls and talking to Houston coach Bill O'Brien.

Wilfork’s final game came in New England, a playoff loss in January. He received a cheer from opposing fans when he was shown on the scoreboard in the final seconds and responded with a wave. He struggled to get off the field as one Patriots player after another came to wish him well. Most believed it was his finale, although Wilfork stopped short of calling it a career.


He made the playoffs in all but one of 11 seasons.

Wilfork finishes his career with 559 tackles, 26 passes defensed, 16 sacks, 4 forced fumbles, and 3 interceptions.

‘‘Congrats to an amazing career big homie!!! Link up soon!!!’’ former teammate and current Denver Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib tweeted.

Cutler to sit Thursday

New Miami Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler won’t play in the team’s exhibition opener Thursday, but look for him to be starting soon enough.

‘‘He didn’t come out of retirement to stand on the sideline,’’ coach Adam Gase said.

Cutler missed Monday’s practice because it took place as he landed in South Florida to sign a $10 million, one-year contract. Cutler, 34, decided to delay the start of his network TV career for the chance to replace Ryan Tannehill and be reunited with Gase, his former offensive coordinator with the Bears.

‘‘A situation like this doesn’t come along very often,’’ said Cutler.

‘‘I know Adam very well; I know the system. And you’re talking about a playoff team with a lot of really, really good players and a lot of potential.’’

Cutler is expected to leapfrog longtime Dolphins backup Matt Moore for the starting job while Tannehill remains out with a left knee injury that likely will sideline him for the entire season.

Landry investigated

Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry is being investigated for possible domestic battery, officials said, an allegation the player’s girlfriend called a fabrication. A spokesman for the Broward County (Fla.) State Attorney’s office said in an e-mail the allegations were under review and no decision has been made on whether Landry will be charged.


The case was recently referred to prosecutors by the Fort Lauderdale Police Department. A heavily redacted police report is dated April 1, but Landry’s girlfriend said in a statement released by his sports management firm the incident occurred in March.

Landry was on the practice field Monday but was not made available to the media.

Estrella Cerqueira, who is the mother of Landry’s daughter, said in the statement that the couple had a ‘‘vocal disagreement’’ but that she never felt physical threatened and that nothing violent took place. She said someone else she did not identify called police.

‘‘I would like to make it very clear that Jarvis would never, ever do anything to harm me or anyone else,’’ Cerqueira said.

‘‘Jarvis and I are happily raising our beautiful daughter and I would like to make a plea to the media that they refrain from spreading this completely false story,’’ she added.

Broward County court records, however, show Cerqueira has filed a paternity suit against Landry and she acknowledged in the statement that has caused emotional strain between them.

‘‘Yes, we are going through a civil family court case and emotions are high,’’ she said.

Gase says the team is aware of the situation and that ‘‘proper steps’’ have been taken, although he did not specify what he meant.


Landry, 24, is in his fourth NFL season out of Louisiana State University. He has 288 career receptions for 3,051 yards for the Dolphins and has twice made the Pro Bowl.

Disk stops Enunwa

New York Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa has a bulging disk in his neck that will likely require surgery and sideline him for the entire season. Coach Todd Bowles said that Enunwa will seek a second opinion, but the receiver is facing a recovery time of 6-9 months . . . Chicago Bears guard Eric Kush will miss the season because of a torn hamstring. He was placed on injured reserve and is scheduled for surgery on Tuesday.

Bills sign WR Boldin

Anquan Boldin is returning for a 15th season after signing with the Bills. The move provides Buffalo with leadership, production, and an instant boost in credibility to a patchwork position. The 36-year-old is a three-time Pro Bowl selection. Boldin spent last season with Detroit, where he had 67 catches for 584 yards and eight touchdowns . . . Trevor Siemian hasn’t officially won the Broncos’ quarterback job just yet but he has earned the starting nod over Paxton Lynch in Denver’s preseason opener at Chicago on Thursday night. Lynch will start Denver’s second game, at San Francisco on Aug. 19, coach Vance Joseph said.

Collins broke trust

Falcons coach Dan Quinn said Jalen Coll inss second suspension for a violation of the league’s policy on performance enhancers has caused a ‘‘broken’’ trust that could cost the cornerback his spot on the team. Quinn added that no decision on Collins’s future with the team is ‘‘imminent.’’ Collins participated in Monday’s practice after his 10-game suspension to open the season was announced Sunday . . . The Minnesota Vikings activated running back Latavius Murray from the physically unable to perform list. Murray had surgery on his right ankle in March . . . The New Orleans Saints re-signed long-snapper Justin Drescher and added kicker Patrick Murray.