Colts' Proehl to retire after 17 seasons in NFL

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Seventeen-year veteran wide receiver Ricky Proehl, signed by the Indianapolis Colts in late November to help compensate for injuries at the position, will retire after Super Bowl XLI on Sunday evening.

Proehl, 38, said the outcome of the championship game will have no bearing on his decision.

If Proehl dresses for the game, it will mark the fourth Super Bowl appearance of his career.

Long regarded as one of the premier slot receivers in NFL history, Proehl was signed by the Colts after Brandon Stokley sustained a season-ending Achilles injury. But Proehl himself suffered through nagging injuries, and caught just three passes for 30 yards in two regular-season appearances.

He does not have a catch in postseason play.

"This is it for me," Proehl said. "The reason I signed with the Colts was because I thought they had a chance to get to the Super Bowl, and I thought I could help them do that. It hasn't gone quite as well as planned, but I was right about them being in the Super Bowl, and it's a pretty good way to end things."

Proehl played in Super Bowls XXXIV and XXXVI with the St. Louis Rams and in Super Bowl XXXVIII with the Carolina Panthers.

In stints with the Arizona Cardinals (1990-94), Seattle Seahawks (1995-96), Chicago Bears (1997), St. Louis (1998-2002), Carolina (2003-2005) and Indianapolis (2006), Proehl has 669 catches for 8,878 yards and 54 touchdowns.

Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com.