Giving up something a person loves is one of the hardest things to do.
In 2010, these players should go out with a bit of dignity.
Some have a chance to go out on top. Others a chance to do it on their own terms.
Is it worth leaving a team a player has known their whole career or accepting the time is up.
These are the players who should wave goodbye and not look back.
Terrell Owens enters season 15 as a member of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Owens has had a fine career with over 1,000 receptions, and by season's end, over 15,000 yards receiving.
And he should use this season as a chance to go out with some dignity.
Owens still has a bit of gas left in the tank, and this season should offer a forum to display it.
He has a solid quarterback in Carson Palmer and enough other targets not to worry about being double teamed.
Owens can use this season to have fun, go out quietly, and show off what he still has left.
He's not going to win the Super Bowl in Cincinnati, but might have a chance at a final run to the playoffs.
The six time Pro Bowler should go out on his terms instead of scrambling for another team next offseason.
The jury is still out on if Brett Favre will still play in 2010 (even if it's just one juror still up in the air).
Regardless, Favre should return in 2010 and officially make it his last season.
Favre proved last season he still got game. The 40-year-old player still has a solid surrounding cast and a chance to win.
If he doesn't win the Super Bowl this season, odds are it's not happening in Minnesota no matter how many times he tries.
Favre has numerous records and will keep adding to the total this year. By a healthy season's end, Favre will have thrown over 10,000 passes, 70,000 yards, and 500 TDs in his career.
The only record Favre doesn't have is career sacked leaders. At the end of the year, he will pass John Elway for that too.
Favre can announce his return and his retirement all in the same. He can go out knowing this is the last season and use it as a celebration for his accomplishments.
Ray Lewis is still at top of his game.
He is one of the smartest defenders and best tacklers around today.
It might not be what Ravens fans want to hear, but Lewis should take advantage of the situation he is in and retire following the season.
He has given blood, sweat, and tears as he enters his 15th season.
The Ravens have another shot to reach the Super Bowl and help him go out on top.
Lewis has always played the game his way. By going out his way as well, it would thwart any awkward handling at the end of his career.
At one of the most violent positions in football, Lewis can go out knowing his body is still intact.
Lewis's seven year contract he signed before last season was never meant to be played out in full.
The Ravens can offer him a coaching job to stick around to teach their future linebackers. His vision on the field and impact on the team doesn't have to disappear.
LaDainian Tomlinson is out for revenge and a title.
He wants to prove to all the doubters he can still play at a high level.
Either way, he should use this season as his last.
If he can still play he proves many wrong, including the San Diego Chargers. If the burst has disappeared forever, no reason to keep forcing the issue.
In the minds of many, this season is set up for a Jets championship run.
Obviously, going out with a title would be the ideal situation for Tomlinson regardless of how he performs.
He doesn't have to carry the full load and should still maintain his minimum 10 touchdowns per season.
To let go of all that money and pride is never easy, but looking like someone who no longer belongs is even worse.
Matt Hasselbeck has been the Seattle Seahawks starting quarterback for nine seasons.
He has been to three pro bowls and led his team to a Super Bowl.
With a new coach, new team, and new system, Hasselbeck is near the end of his tenure in Seattle.
Instead of being like the numerous others who cling on as a backup, he should end it where he made the most impact.
Hasselbeck has not played a full season in three years. He still has some talent and production value left, but not enough to help his team even sniff the playoffs.
Hasselbeck should not use 2010 as a platform to audition for other teams. The platform should be utilized as a thank you to the Seattle fans who supported him over the past 10 seasons.
The soon to be 36 year-old Jason Taylor has jumped ship to the enemy.
Like many of his New York Jets teammates, Taylor is out for revenge and a championship.
Part of the Jets signing him was to slap the Miami Dolphins in the face.
As a pure pass rusher, Taylor can still get the job done. At this stage of his career he knows the tendencies of most blockers and how to get to the quarterback.
Taylor should take advantage of the depth and surrounding defense to produce a solid year. He may even get lucky enough to win a Super Bowl.
Taylor has stayed healthy throughout most his career and should take advantage of that now.
He is no longer an every down player and has always had aspirations beyond football. By the end of 2010, it would be a great time to venture out to Hollywood.
Torry Holt has joined the pass happy New England Patriots offense for 2010.
Holt enters his 12th season a shell of himself from the St. Louis Rams days.
His speed has dissipated and the tank is near empty.
Holt went to the Patriots for one reason, a championship. He hopes to ride the coattails of his surrounding teammates.
He can still catch and run precise routes that should allow him some playing time in New England.
Holt has attended seven Pro Bowls, has 920 receptions and 13,382 yards receiving coming into this year.
If the title doesn't come at season's end, it's not worth trying again for someone who has already played a significant role on a championship team.
Darren Sharper has accomplished most everything a safety in the NFL could want.
He has won a championship, been to five pro bowls, and is on numerous top five record lists.
Sharper enters 2010 with 63 career interceptions. That puts him at sixth all time in the NFL.
By the end of this season, Sharper should be in sole possession of number five.
Sharper also holds the number two spot in interception return TDs and yards. Both easily in reach to take ownership of the top spot.
He is coming off a knee injury and may not even be the every down starter for the New Orleans Saints.
His veteran savvy and knack for the ball are still vital for the Saints defense. Coach Gregg Williams clearly knows how to continue getting the most out of him.
Odds are this will be the last season for Sharper in New Orleans. He can seek a fourth team or let his body heal on the beaches in retirement.
Donald Driver has been one of the most consistent wide receivers in Green Bay Packers history. He is the all time Packers reception leader.
Driver is loved in Green Bay and should allow himself to go out the right way this year.
His contract expires at season's end. There is no reason for Driver to push himself to another team or leave Green Bay behind.
The three time Pro Bowler is coming off arthroscopic surgery in both knees entering 2010. That's never a good sign for any NFL player, especially at age 35.
His production will most likely dip this year, while the coaching staff tries to keep him healthy with fewer snaps.
With young talented receivers behind him on the depth chart, it's clear that after this season the Packers will have no need for Driver as a player.
He should do what so few in his position do, hang'em up with the only team he has ever known.
Jamael Orondé "Rondé" Barber has already stated this could be his final season.
His brother Tiki Barber made the choice to retire in 2006, one of the smartest decisions he had ever made.
Ronde has a chance to go out while still playing solid football.
Barber has always been one of the better tackling cornerbacks. Many at that position avoid contact, but not Barber.
He still possesses solid ball hawking schools and will take advantage of quarterback mistakes on bad throws.
Barber has seen a slight decline in his production the past couple years. Some of that may have to do with the coaching changes that occurred.
Barber is no longer the number one cornerback with Aqib Talib in the system. Other young cornerbacks like Elbert Mack may also eat into his playing time.
Barber has always been a Buccaneer through good times and bad. It would be a shame to see the five time Pro Bowler wearing another jersey in 2011.