Blog Entry

LT on last legs

Posted on: February 22, 2010 5:02 pm


Are you shocked by the San Diego Chargers releasing running back LaDainian Tomlinson?

You shouldn't be.

He has no get-up-and-go anymore. There is no second gear, nothing that can turn a 4-yard run into a 20-yard run.

That was painfully evident when the Chargers lost in the AFC Divisional round to the New York Jets. Tomlinson couldn't get through the holes with any pop. He finished that game with 24 yards on 12 carries. His long run was 5 yards.

Tomlinson didn't average over 4 yards a carry in his last eight games, including the playoff game, although he had just one carry in the regular-season finale. He was under 3.5 per rush in three of those games. He had just two games of 4 yards or more per carry in the entire season.

That's a sign it's all gone. The per-rush average is the most important stat for any back. Forget all the other numbers. That's the one.

And for LT it's all the proof we need that he is finished as a feature back. That's OK. He's had a wonderful career, one that will get him a bust in Canton.

What's next for him? He might be able to help a team in spot duty, but expecting anything more than that would be foolish.

Any team that signs him will be getting a shell of the LT we watched for most of the past nine years.

Don't get caught up in the name -- or in this case the initials. He isn't what you think he is anymore. The NFL is a cruel business and when the greats go it's even more so. But that's life.

LT isn't LT anymore. That's a fact



Category: NFL

Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2010 8:05 pm

LT on last legs

LT may not be a 2k yard back, but I can't wait to see what is said when who ever runs the ball next year for the Chargers is struggling.  They can't run block.  LT may have lost a step, but that still puts him in the better half of the league.

LT can contribute to a team as long as he's willing to not be the focal point.  Patriots would be a good team for someone like him, just don't know if for actually him. Plus, he's not a fan of the cold. 

Do the Ravens really want to pay McGahee 6 mill as a backup/split back when they could sign LT for half that......and the Ravens are a contending team........

Since: Oct 17, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2010 11:00 am

Do any of you even watch football??

While LT may not be the back he was a few years ago he still has plenty of gas left in the tank.  For the most part RBs in the NFL are made or broken by their offensive lines and the SD line was just that OFFENSIVE in the running game last season.  Your per carry average just isn't going to be very high when a 350 pounder has both hands on you two yards deep on half of your carries!

Since: Jan 14, 2010
Posted on: February 24, 2010 7:07 am

LT on last legs

Outstanding post.  Couldn't have said it better myself.  I look forward to the day in a couple years when he re-signs with the Chargers for a day to retire and rides off into the Canton sunset.

Since: Dec 20, 2009
Posted on: February 24, 2010 4:03 am

LT on last legs

It was kinda sad to see LT's comments about wanting to go to a team thats lookin to win a title. why cant these guys take thier @%7#*! millions and go lay by the pool for the next 5 years and heal? I would give up my hearing to have had what he had.... Barry Sanders was the best RB ever and probably the smartest ever also.

Since: Aug 22, 2007
Posted on: February 24, 2010 3:39 am

LT on last legs

"LT"(by the way, we all know who the real -world champion-NFC east beast-real LT is) has more money than a dutch hooker working overtime. does he really want a title? we'll see. but he'd better be willing to sacrifice and be a teamer. i think he's done. but he'll still play for the $. houston i say.

Since: Mar 10, 2008
Posted on: February 23, 2010 8:17 pm

LT on last legs

WH Y? O ya BB and LT go toghether like oil and water or blasting caps and tnt  The only way they get toghether is for a cage match,now that would be a great pay for view  LOud mouth pros vs coaching joes could be a series next writers strike.  They just dont like each other.

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: February 23, 2010 7:48 pm

LT on last legs

Their Window is almost sealed? We must not see the same team. Kolb could step in for McNabb and the offense won't miss a beat. The WR/RB/TE spots all have young and talented people playing. Another rusher to go opposite Trent Cole will help the defense a lot. The Oline could use some re-tooling but in no way is the window closing.

Jackson, Kolb, McCoy, Celek, and Maclin are going to be around for awhile.

LT could be somewhat of a help here to show McCoy all the pointers. They still need a big back though to help the short-yardaage and goal-line situations.

Since: Nov 16, 2009
Posted on: February 23, 2010 7:08 pm

LT on last legs

Seems to me like these are the questions:

1)  What is his value to teams?
-  He can expect to share the load, with heavy use on passing downs (since he would provide better pass protection than many younger players do).

2)  Who wants to have LT on their team?
-  Seems like many teams might be interested, just not as the #1 back on the team.

3)  Who would LT be willing to play for?
-  His comments about playing for a championship might only be lip service.

4)  How much money are teams willing to pay for his services?
-  He will not be a primary back, so teams will probably not get ridiculous.  Also, runningbacks have not been getting paid so much.  Add in that there will be many more restricted free agents due to the lack of a CBA...  (ok, that's another issue), some teams may be able to lock-up quality younger backs for less money.

5)  How much money will LT require to sign a contract?
-  Always a key issue when dealing with veteran egos.  He might not be willing to play for only $2mil, as some in this thread have suggested.  I suspect he would expect more at the start, with his expectations going down as camp approaches.  Perhaps he would if it is a team legitimately in the running for the Super Bowl.

6)  Would the contract have to be for more than one year?
-  Multi-year deals with a healthy bonus and low salary (for early years) worked in the past, because spreading money for the cap was important, and recognizing that later years would not be played (but get claimed by the agent at signing for the sake of the player's ego).  Since he looks like he is near the end of his career, will a team want to commit much money knowing he may not make it past 2010?  Also, with the salary cap not an issue this year, the idea of signing him to a multi-year deal with a healthy bonus just seems unrealistic.  Maybe the right answer is to give him an incentive laden contract that could allow for the "big" numbers to placate his ego, though he would not have much chance of hitting many of the incentives.

Regardless, good luck to LT, he was one of the best, and a "class" act.

Since: Jan 12, 2007
Posted on: February 23, 2010 3:58 pm

LT on last legs

Not a snowballs chance in hell. Sure the Patriots sign older players but ones who still have SOMETHING to offer, this guy is DONE!!!!

Plus he insulted the hell out the team and that will never be forgotten.

Hang up the cleats let us remember you for the great player you were, not a guy who stayed on the field way too long.

Since: Oct 30, 2006
Posted on: February 23, 2010 1:39 pm

LT on last legs

Hey Prisco. If yards per carry are the only stat, then why is LT's 3.3 yard per carry average under scrutiny when Darren Sproles ypc was only 3.7 (mostly on 3rd downs). LT didn't look great this year, but the Chargers had ZERO running game.

With a decent HC (one that LT doesn't obviously dislike so much) I could see him rushing for 1,200 yards. Hopefully he like Brees and Harrison can get a Super Bowl Ring after being punted by the Bolt Dolts.

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