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NFL notebook: Urlacher announces retirement

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Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher announced his retirement from the NFL on Wednesday, May 22, 2013.

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By The Associated Press
Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 7:45 p.m.

CHICAGO — Brian Urlacher wasn't sure how dominant he could be any longer, so he's calling it a career after 13 seasons with the Bears.

The eight-time Pro Bowler and 2005 NFL Defensive Player of the Year announced his retirement through social media accounts Wednesday.

“After spending a lot of time this spring thinking about my NFL future, I have made a decision to retire,” Urlacher said in a statement. “I'm proud to say that I gave all of you everything I had every time I took the field. I will miss this great game, but I leave it with no regrets.”

Urlacher was the face of the Bears, and he ranks among the best middle linebackers to suit up for a franchise with an impressive list that includes Hall of Famers Bill George, Dick Butkus and Mike Singletary.

Smith joins Jay-Z's group

Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith chose Jay-Z's new Roc Nation Sports to represent him. Smith fired his agents shortly after the NFL draft.

The former West Virginia star met with a handful of agents before announcing that he had chosen Jay-Z's agency.

Smith insisted after practice that Jay-Z didn't play “that big of a role” in his final decision — although the quarterback recently tweeted a photo of him with the hip-hop star.

Crabtree has surgery

Niners leading wide receiver Michael Crabtree had surgery to repair a torn right Achilles tendon Wednesday, one day after suffering the injury during an organized team activity.

Coach Jim Harbaugh did not speculate when Crabtree might return to play, but the injury is not necessarily season ending.

Crabtree had career highs last season with 85 receptions for 1,105 yards and nine scores.

Rams lineman suspended

Rams offensive lineman Rokevious Watkins was suspended without pay for the season opener for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

Watkins was a fifth-round pick last year and played in one game before going on injured reserve with an ankle injury. He's expected to contend for playing time this season.

Tebow time in AFL?

Philadelphia Soul part owner Ron Jaworski said he was serious about his offer to former Jets quarterback Tim Tebow to join the Arena League team.

Jaworski, a former Eagles quarterback, reached out to Tebow a day after the Jets released him in April. Jaworski has yet to hear from Tebow but expects to eventually.

“I love the guy,” Jaworski said. “I want him here just for his leadership.”

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