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Pittsburgh Steelers Center Maurkice Pouncey has hung up his cleats and is retiring from the sport of football he announced Friday afternoon. Maurkice and his twin brother Mike Pouncey both retired as announced by Maurkice’s former teammate Ramon Foster on Twitter. 

Maurkice Pouncey spent all 11 of his NFL seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers after being taken by the franchise 18th overall in the 2010 NFL Draft. 

“I’ll always love the game of football and always will be the ultimate competitor in life” Pouncey said on social media, “I’m just not in love with the sacrifice football carries on my life, my beautiful daughters Jayda, Marley, and my family” he continued. 

Pouncey held a major leadership role in the Steelers locker room and has been on record saying he’d be playing as long as Ben (Roethlisberger) was playing. Pouncey is a nine-time Pro-Bowler, and three-time First-Team All-Pro. In addition, the Florida product was named to the NFL’s all decade team for the 2010’s. 

Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin released a statement saying “He has done so much for his teammates and the entire organization, and I wish him all the best to he and his family in which I know he will continue to be successful in every aspect of life.”

The retirement statement ended with a heartfelt reflection as Maurkice wrote “As I write this farewell speech I cry and laugh that twin boys from Lakeland, FL that grew up in poverty made it this far in life both living out NFL dreams.”