OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP)Longtime Ravens punter Sam Koch retired Thursday and will join the Baltimore coaching staff as a special teams consultant.
A 16-year veteran, Koch, 39, appeared in a franchise-record 256 regular-season games, 239 consecutively from 2006-20, also a team record. He was a member of Baltimore’s 2012 Super Bowl championship team, and appeared in 20 postseason games.
A 2015 Pro Bowl selection who made the AP’s second-team All-Pro squad that season, Koch set franchise records in punts (1,168), punt yardage (52,868), career gross average (45.3), career net average (39.7) and punts inside the 20 (453). His 1,168 career punts are the most by a punter with a single team in NFL history.
He also was the holder on all but one of Justin Tucker’s 326 field goals made, including 17 game-winners, helping Tucker put together the best success rate (91.1%) in NFL history.
”Sam is the ultimate example of what it means to be a professional,” Tucker said. ”The great memories we created together start with him and his work ethic, his abilities and his attention to detail. I owe much of my success over the last 10 years to Sam, and many Ravens victories over the last 16 years are very much because of Sam’s efforts.
”He is an outstanding teammate and leader in our locker room, and like many great Ravens before him, he has been essential to defining our culture as a team. Sam changed the way everyone in the football world looks at punting, and his consistency and proficiency are unmatched throughout the history of our game.”
Koch completed 7 of 8 passes for 82 yards on fake punts, also scored one rushing touchdown and one 2-point conversion on fakes.
Koch was chosen by Baltimore in the sixth round of the 2006 draft out of Nebraska.
”Trust is a word that describes the deeply held relationship that Sam has with the Ravens,” said former special teams coordinator and associate head coach Jerry Rosburg. ”We could always trust that Sam would be prepared; we could trust he would deliver in clutch situations; we could trust that he would be an exemplary teammate; and we could trust that his word was his bond.
”Sam will rightly be remembered in Baltimore as an elite performer, for he holds all the relevant records of his position. But he will also be remembered in the colorful history of the NFL, and football at large, for his incredible creativity and execution of alternative ways of punting the football.”
Baltimore drafted punter Jordan Stout of Penn State in the fourth round in April.
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