Moments after disclosing to a nationally televised audience on ESPN’s “Mike and Mike in the Morning” that he had made the decision to retire from professional football, Green Bay wide receiver Donald Driver noted that, “Someone is always going to be able to tell my kids that their dad was a great football player.”
Having played in more than 200 NFL contests; garnering three Pro Bowl bids; holding the all-time receptions and receiving yardage records for one of the most storied franchises in the sport’s history; playing an integral role on a Super Bowl-winning squad; and boasting seven 1,000-yard seasons to his name, among others, it is not too difficult to connect the dots in respect to Driver’s aforementioned claim.
Ultimately, though, how storied is the career—from both a franchise and league standpoint—of Driver?
Before Driver, who turns 38 on Saturday, officially closes the curtain on his gridiron career on Wednesday, listed below are some numbers which help illustrate and define the 14-year legacy forged by the man known, simply, as “Double D”:
24: Number of wide receivers selected ahead of Driver, formerly of Alcorn State, in the 1999 NFL draft. Of the players who had their name called prior to Driver, tabbed by the Packers with the 213th overall selection, only one, Torry Holt, finished with more catches and receiving yards than the Houston, Texas native’s 743 grabs and 10,137 yards, respectively. Additionally, only Holt (74) accounted for more touchdown receptions than Driver’s 61. Driver, however, donned an NFL uniform on Sundays more than any other receiver selected in the final NFL draft of the 20th Century—by a two-season margin (Holt played in 173 contests).
133: Consecutive games with a reception, a Packer record which was accrued over a span of nine seasons (2002-10).
5: Of the top-20 Packer single-season reception totals held by Driver, the most by any player in team history. Driver’s top season in terms of receptions was in 2006, when the then 31-year-old snared 92 passes—good for fifth in Green Bay history and fifth in the league that season.
205: Games played by Driver, which ranks 223rd all-time in NFL history. However, of the players to reach said number, only 46, including Driver, have spent their entire career with one franchise. Finally, of the 46 players to spend their career within a single city, Driver and Hines Ward stand as the lone wide receivers to hold such a distinction.
18: Driver retires as one of only 18 players in NFL history with at least 700 receptions, 10,000 receiving yards and 200 games played.
36: Touchdown passes snared by Driver courtesy of Brett Favre, the third most popular target in terms of scores for the NFL’s all-time leader in touchdowns thrown (trailing only Freeman, 57, and Sterling Sharpe, 41, in Packer history).
1,241: Receiving yards averaged per year by Driver from 2004-06. Only Cincinnati’s Chad Johnson averaged at least 1,200 receiving yards during the aforesaid three-year period.
61: Career touchdown receptions accumulated by Driver, the third most in club history (trumped only Don Hutson, 99, and Sharpe, 65).
10,354: Total yards from scrimmage by Driver, the 11th highest total among active players during the 2012 campaign. In turn, the total ranks 80th in NFL history and 38th all-time among wide receivers.
Driver will hold a public retirement ceremony within the Lambeau Field Atrium on Feb. 6.