Jeff Byers

Geoff Hangartner To Retire

2:24pm: The Panthers announced (via Twitter) that Hangartner has retired. Fellow O-Lineman Jeff Byers has also decided to retire.

11:10am: On the heels of Jordan Gross‘ retirement announcement, another Panthers offensive lineman has decided to call it a career, reports Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer. According to Person, guard Geoff Hangartner has decided to retire.

“I’ve known for a while I was going to retire. I knew when I came back this was going to be my last year,” Hangartner told Person. “It was a good way for me to end because I got to come back and play for a team I loved playing for and finish out with my buddies. Luckily we had some success, which made it even more fun. It was a fitting way for me to end my career.”

A longtime starter in Carolina and Buffalo, Hangartner’s 2013 season was derailed by injuries, but he appeared in part-time action in eight games with the Panthers. While his loss won’t be felt as deeply by the team as Gross’ departure, Hangartner is another player the club will have to replace for 2014. The 31-year-old’s decision to retire won’t affect the Panthers’ cap, as Hangartner hadn’t been under contract for ’14.