Former Rams Defensive Lineman Michael Brockers Announces Retirement From NFL
Michael Brockers, Aaron Donald, Rams
Katelyn Mulcahy-Getty Images

The Los Angeles Rams defensive line will look different in the 2024 NFL season after Aaron Donald announced his retirement from the NFL.

Donald was the cornerstone of the Rams’ defense for a decade, but without him upfront head coach Sean McVay and defensive coordinator will need to lean on their young upstart group to fill the void. Kobie Turner and Byron Young are expected to lead the way, with newcomers Jared Verse and Braden Fiske joining to help shore up the D-line and bring additional pressure.

Although Donald was the heart and soul of the defensive for years, he had several runningmates during his time in St. Louis and Los Angeles. Before Donald came to the Rams franchise in 2014, the team had another first-rounder in Michael Brockers in the trenches.

Like Donald, Brockers helped usher in the next era for the organization and he recently announced his retirement from the NFL, via his personal Instagram account:

In the clip, Brockers thanks God, his family, coaches, teammates and the Rams and Detroit Lions fans for allowing him to represent them for 11 years. Brockers spent nine years with L.A. before being traded to Detroit where he spent an additional two seasons.

Brockers was originally selected No. 14 overall in the 2012 NFL Draft after a successful run at LSU. He was immediately productive his rookie year and was named to the PFWA All-Rookie team for his efforts. After the team took Donald in the 2014 NFL Draft two years later, the duo formed the backbone of the defensive front for seven seasons before Brockers was shipped off to the Lions.

The former defensive lineman played two seasons with Detroit and was released shortly after the conclusion of the 2023 season. Brockers didn’t play last season, an early indication that his playing days were over.

For his career, Brockers recorded 29 sacks and 451 total tackles in 160 games. A solid contributor for both the Rams and Lions, he had a successful career and deserves to enjoy his retirement.

Les Snead explains why Rams traded up in 2024 NFL Draft to take Braden Fiske

With Donald gone, the next wave of defensive lineman will have to find ways to replace his production with the Rams. After Verse fell in their laps at No. 19, general manager Les Snead explained that the team was more aggressive to trade up for Fiske in hopes of replicating his success with Verse at Florida State.