ALLEN PARK, Mich. (WXYZ) -- Linebacker Stephen Tulloch had tears streaming down is face as he returned to Detroit Thursday to formally announce his retirement from the NFL and say goodbye to the Detroit Lions.
Tulloch was drafted by the Tennessee Titans in 2006, and was signed by the Lions in 2011. He spent five seasons with the team before being released in 2016. He was picked up by the Philadelphia Eagles, but Tulloch says his heart remained in Detroit and that is why he wanted to retire here.
"I promised myself I wouldnt' get choked up today," Tulloch said with tears streaming down his face as he took the podium at the Lions practice facility in Allen Park.
Lions head coach Jim Caldwell was also on hand Thursday. He recalled all of Tulloch's acheivments on the field, but insisted he was even better off it. "He was a model citizen in every respect, but he also found a heart for the city of Detroit," said Caldwell.
Tulloch said he plans to continue his philanthropy work in his retirement, and is leaving for Haiti Friday to build houses and schools with Marshawn Lynch, Cliff Avril and other NFLers.
"It's not all about the accolades and stats, it's about the impact you have on people's lives," said Tulloch.