Todd McClure Will Retire a Falcon After 14 Seasons

After 14 great seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, Todd McClure has decided to hang 'em up.

As is the case with most offensive linemen, McClure was vastly under-appreciated by most casual Falcons fans and will likely leave in the same manner.

After all, with all the excitement surrounding free agency, the recent release of three key starters and the return of Tony Gonzalez, who is Todd McClure and why should we even care?

Well, for starters, keep in mind that offensive linemen are rarely praised and are heavily criticized. If they do their job well, they simply did their job. There's really nothing all that glamorous about it. However, if the quarterback takes a sack or the running back gets stuffed, the offensive line is typically the first card we like to pull in our little blame game.

With that, let's take a look back on McClure's career.

When the 36-year-old was drafted in the seventh round by Atlanta in 1999, he started out his career suffering an ACL tear during training camp that would keep him sidelined his entire rookie season.

McClure responded to the injury by going on to play in 198 games as a Falcon – in which he went over nine consecutive seasons without missing a start with 195 total.

He and his offensive line were also responsible for the Falcons leading the league in rushing from 2003-2006. So it's actually no surprise that every running back that's ever had McClure as a blocker has rushed for 1000-plus yards rushing.

So why should you care about Todd McClure? 

I shouldn't have to tell you. He's got a resume over a decade long that can do the talking.

Do you have any favorite memories of McClure? How do you think his replacement, Peter Konz, will fare in 2013? 

Sound off in the comments and be sure to send him a tweet @ToddMcClure62 letting him know how much you appreciate the foundation he helped build in Atlanta.

About Kevin Causey

dry humorist, craft beer enthusiast, occasionally unbiased SEC fan, UGA alumni, contributor for The Student Section, This Given Sunday and Crossover Chronicles