The longest tenured member of the Giants announced his retirement from the league after 11 years in the NFL and winning two Super Bowls with the team; one in 2007 and the other in 2011, both of which he was a starting offensive lineman for in each season.
Following his announcement, Diehl said one of the hardest things about his walking away from the game was how his seven-year old daughter Addison would take her father not playing football anymore.
“It’s not very easy for my daughter to talk about me retiring and not playing football,” Diehl said. “The Giants are just as much family to her as they are to me. She’s been going to the games and at seven years old, she understands everything. She understands the game and the players and how important it is to play in the NFL. For her, my stepping away from something she loves as much as I do is not an easy thing.”
Diehl was a former fifth-round pick out of the University of Illinois back in the 2003 NFL Draft by the Giants and became a fixture of the line in his rookie season, starting in all 16 games. During his career, he played all over the line from left tackle in 2007 to right guard, which is where he played in his final season in 2013; a spot he ended up taking over for when Chris Snee went on season-ending injured reserve following an early season hip injury.
Before the 2013 season, Diehl was a candidate to be cut from the team due to his high salary, but because of his experience and the Giants need for lineman to protect Eli Manning, the team worked out a deal in which Diehl took a pay cut in order to stay with the Giants; a move that ended up working out for the season given that four starters on the offensive line were put on season-ending IR during the year. When he spoke about his career, Diehl talked about how much he loved the sport and felt like a very fortunate person in his 11 years.
“I love football,” Diehl said. “I love being in the game, I love watching film, I love doing all of that and I’m going to miss that aspect of it. But I know I’m ready to start the new and next chapter of my life. I’m ready to not only be a bigger part of my daughter’s life, but I’m ready to spread my knowledge and help other people with the game and continue to do stuff throughout our community and charity work and be involved with the New York Giants in any way possible. I’ve accomplished everything I could possibly dream of as a football player. If in 2003, anyone would have said that Dave Diehl, a fifth-round draft pick out of Illinois, would win two Super Bowls, play in the Pro Bowl and win every single Giant award possible, people would have said you’re crazy. I have a lot to be proud of.”
With Diehl now retiring, the only remaining offensive lineman from the team's Super Bowl XLII team is Snee and his status for 2014 is up in the air because of his health.
We at Giants 101 would like to wish Diehl well in retirement and would like to congratulate him on a successful career which featured two Super Bowl championships.
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