Alstott, Bucs call Thursday press conference

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and fullback Mike Alstott have called at 10 a.m. press conference for Thursday. There is no official word from either party, but it is believed that the 12-year veteran will follow through on the retirement hints that he dropped earlier this month.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and fullback Mike Alstott have called at 10 a.m. press conference for Thursday where it is believed the 12-year veteran will announce his retirement.

Alstott hinted as much during a radio interview with WDAE-AM in Tampa earlier this month, where he admitted the idea of risking further injury to his neck wasn't appealing to him or his family.

''You can read between the lines,'' Alstott said. ''I've had some injuries; I have a young family; I can't be selfish in that regard. I can't go have more surgeries; it wouldn't be worth it. I was disappointed I couldn't be on the field this year, but I'm having fun now. Right now my concentration is on [my foundation].''

Should Alstott retire, he would do so as the franchise's leader in total touchdowns (71) and rushing touchdowns (58), along with ranking second all-time in rushing yards (5,088 yards).

Alstott, 33, spent the entire 2007 season on injured reserve with a neck injury, the second time in five years the beloved "A-Train" has missed time due to a neck injury.

Alstott had surgery on his injured neck in 2003, as doctors removed a compressed disc and replaced it with the vertebrae from a cadaver. A titanium plate was used to fuse it together.

In August Alstott learned that there was stress to his neck above the previously injured area and doctors recommended that he not play, leading to a tearful press conference at One Buc Place that had the feel of a retirement address and not a "we'll see you next year" address.

Matthew Postins covers the Buccaneers for and the Charlotte Sun-Herald in Port Charlotte, Fla. An award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers Association, he appears frequently on Scot Brantley Show from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WHBO 1470-AM in Tampa-Clearwater.

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