If you believe NFL running backs have become more marginalized in the past, let's say, decade of the league, you're probably right. They're not drafted as highly, and a number of low-round picks and undrafted free agents have made just as much of an impact as those taken in the first or second rounds.
This is the new NFL, and if you think NFL running backs have struggled to get high-paying, long-term contracts lately, consider the plight (and low pay days) of the NFL fullback. And even though he's coming off a Super Bowl victory with the Seahawks, fullback Michael Robinson figures he'll probably retire.
“There really isn't a market for 31-year fullbacks headed into their ninth year in the league," Robinson said, via statecollege.com. "Economically speaking, I understand that. I'm going to give myself a little time after the draft to let teams see how their rosters shake out. After seeing what happens, I'm probably going to call it a career.”
Robinson was drafted in the fourth round of the 2006 draft by the 49ers, and he scored the only two regular-season touchdowns of his career in his rookie season. He's had a solid career, making the Pro Bowl in 2011, but last season, he only played in four games after suffering a liver and kidney illness, which caused him to lose 30 pounds early in the season. By the end of the year, though, he was instrumental in the Super Bowl run.
Robinson also has been doing some work as a broadcaster, spending time last week with the NFL Network during the scheduling release extravaganza.
“I'm treating my broadcast career as if I am not going to play anymore,” Robinson said. “And if I do get a call from a team, then I'm counting that as a bonus.”
And if none of that doesn't work, perhaps he can just turn to soap opera acting.