JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Surrounded by his family, friends and former teammates, kicker Josh Scobee scribbled his name on his last contract as an NFL player.
The 34-year-old held back emotions as the team paid tribute to his accomplishments during his 11-year tenure in Jacksonville.
"Number one, I want to thank the Jaguars organization for allowing me to retire as a Jaguar," Scobee said. "When I got drafted here in , it was more than a blessing because I didn't know what I was getting myself into."
The franchise's all-time leading scorer put pen to paper on a ceremonial one-day deal. Universally accepted as a cornerstone of the Jack Del Rio era, Scobee was a key cog in many victories during his time with the Jaguars.
For his efforts, Scobee was always admired and respected by his teammates. Current Jaguars middle linebacker Paul Posluszny played with Scobee from 2011-2015. The defensive player complimented Scobee's character on and off the field.
"When I first got into the NFL, a great special teams coach said the highest compliment that you can give someone in the NFL is to call them a true professional," Posluszny said.
"Not that they were a good athlete, someone had great hands or was a great tackler. It was that you were a true professional. That meant that not only you mastered your skills, [but] the position you played. That you were dedicated and loyal and you were a great teammate and you were doing things the right way at all times. One thing about Josh, that's what he is."
Scobee left a lasting impression on the people he worked with. Former Jaguars punter Adam Podlesh, who spoke at the press conference, stressed how special Scobee was as a person.
"It's one thing to become elite at what you do in the NFL, but it's another to truly understand the power that you have when you get into that position," Podlesh said. "You can impact people's lives so easily, in such profound ways from that seat and Josh understands this. He not only understands this, he embraces it."
Scobee won't just be remembered for his play on Sundays. He will always be known for his special connection to Jacksonville and its fans.
"I love this city," Scobee said. "I'm so glad I got drafted here and was able to play here for as long as I did. Love this organization and I appreciate everything everyone's ever done for me and now I'll always be a Jaguar."
Scobee said he never grew up wanting to play football. By chance, his life, his career and the Jaguars' future were changed.
"I got into football by accident," Scobee said.
"I basically started playing football when I was 17. I was out kicking footballs with a friend of mine on our high school practice football field about two weeks before the start of our senior football season. The football coach was going out to two-a-days, out to practice, and saw me kick the ball and came over and introduced himself and asked me to play. Five weeks later, I got a scholarship offer from Louisiana Tech."
The former kicker scored 1,022 points as a Jaguar. He also played the second-most seasons for the franchise, behind former center Brad Meester, who played for 14 years.
His longevity and reliability were Scobee's calling cards in Jacksonville. However, he may not be done with the Jaguars just yet.
"There are some things I have in store on the horizon," Scobee said. "I have a feeling it'll be something with the Jaguars. My passion is golf - as most of you know - so I'd like to get involved with the PGA Tour somehow."
Follow Mike Kaye on Twitter at @Mike_E_Kaye.
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