DeMarcus Ware, 8th all time in sacks, announces retirement

Linebacker DeMarcus Ware announced Monday he is retiring at age 34 after 12 NFL seasons, saying in a tweet that “long-term health and quality of life outweigh the spark and passion to play that I once had.”

“After a lot of thought and prayer, I’ve decided to accept the unknown and retire from my NFL career,” Ware said in the Twitter post.

It’s time ….

Ware came to the Broncos from the Dallas Cowboys as part of Denver’s free-agency binge in 2014, when cornerback Aqib Talib, receiver Emmanuel Sanders and safety T.J. Ward were also signed. All four players were selected to at least one Pro Bowl since then.

Ware was saluted in tweets by John Elway, the Broncos and the Cowboys. Ware is Dallas’ all-time sacks leader, with 117.

DeMarcus – you are the epitome of what an NFL player should be.

Congrats on your Hall of Fame career & thank you for becoming a Bronco!

— John Elway (@johnelway) March 13, 2017

Wishing all the best to #DallasCowboys franchise sack leader as he retires from the @NFL! #CowboyForLife

— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) March 13, 2017

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Ware was everything he could have ever wanted in a player.

“He was one of the most dominant NFL players at his position in his era, and he was one of the most dynamic players in the history of the Dallas Cowboys. We wish nothing but the best for DeMarcus and his family, and we appreciate and respect his contributions to the NFL and to our team,” Jones said in a statement.

Peyton Manning, who shared with Ware the leadership of the Broncos’ team that won Super Bowl 50, congratulated his former teammate and co-captain.

“DeMarcus Ware is not only a Hall of Fame player, but…