New Orleans Saints linebacker Craig Robertson announced his retirement today from professional football.
"Craig was a fantastic player, leader and a consummate professional throughout his time with the New Orleans Saints," said Saints Executive Vice-President/General Manager Mickey Loomis. "When he arrived in 2016, Craig instantly became a leader in the locker room and was well respected by his teammates and staff. It was a pleasure watching Craig's passion, toughness and leadership ability on the field, in our locker room and in our community. We thank him and wish him, his wife Brittani and their children all the best in their future endeavors."
"I remember Craig first joining us in 2016 when I was entering my first full season as defensive coordinator," said Saints Head Coach Dennis Allen. "Craig was everything that you look for in a player, smart, hard-working and versatile. He poured all of those attributes along with his God-given talent into our building every day, providing the leadership a coach needs for a young defense to build. Craig also had that same impact on our special teams units, which also continued to build with his hard work and leadership. I congratulate Craig for what he achieved in his NFL playing career and thank him for his contributions to the New Orleans Saints."
"After not being drafted into the NFL to be able to play ten years in this league was truly a blessing," said Robertson. "There are a lot of people that I want to thank for the support throughout my career, first and foremost my own family and my family with the New Orleans Saints. The five years we spent in New Orleans were truly special. Credit to that goes not only to the culture that the entire organization has and to the teammates in the locker room, but also to a fan base that was tremendous to me and my family throughout our time here."
As linebacker Craig Robertson announces his retirement from the NFL, we take a look back at his years in the uniform with the New Orleans Saints.
Robertson signed with New Orleans as an unrestricted free agent in 2016 after originally signing as an undrafted free agent with the Cleveland Browns in 2011 out of North Texas. During his career with the Saints (2016-20) and Browns (2011-15), he appeared in 136 contests with 65 starts and tallied career totals of 556 tackles (377 solo), nine sacks, ten interceptions, 27 passes defensed, three forced fumbles, eight fumble recoveries, one recovered for a touchdown, 51 special teams stops, one coverage forced fumble and one recovery and one blocked punt recovery.
Upon signing with New Orleans in 2016, Robertson started all 15 games he appeared in at both middle linebacker and weakside linebacker, providing stability, playmaking ability and leadership to a young, evolving defensive unit. Robertson, set a career-high with 131 tackles (100 solo), one sack, one interception, five passes defensed, two fumble recoveries and three special teams stops. As New Orleans reached the postseason for the first time since 2013 in 2017, Robertson played a significant role in the unit's defensive improvement, playing in all 16 games with 12 starts and posting 77 tackles (50 solo), two sacks, two interceptions, six passes defensed, one forced fumble and a fumble recovery. During his Saints tenure, Robertson was a linchpin on the team's coverage units, making 19 tackles, forcing a fumble, recovering one and recovering a blocked punt. His final two seasons, Robertson captained a special teams unit that was ranked first in the NFL in 2019 and fifth in 2020 in NFL Writer Rick Gosselin's annual special teams rankings.
Equally respected off the field, the Stafford, Texas native was voted by his teammates as a captain for four consecutive seasons and was a staple in community events throughout his career, including being selected as the Browns' club nominee for the NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year Award in 2014.