June 28, 2012


Will We Ever See Another LT? (Robert Mays, June 18, 2012, Grantland)

In today's NFL, there's a feeling of impermanence surrounding even the best running backs. The value of the position has diminished to the point that teams that draft backs too high or dole out massive contracts are questioned for it, and the thing is, those questions have some merit. The New York Giants won a Super Bowl in February with the league's worst rushing offense. Two of the league's best five backs will be coming back from torn ACLs this season. Another took home $30 million guaranteed last offseason before falling off the face of the earth. With every 5,000-yard passer and every running back by committee, there's an increased fragility in the lifespan of truly dominant backs. That's why today, as LaDainian Tomlinson ends an unbelievable 11-year career, it feels like an era is ending with it.

Give Bill Belichick a worse quarterback and a better running back and you'd get ten similar years.

The question is, will we ever see another Lawrence Taylor?  That LT would have been switched to the offensive side of the ball today, which is why there are no longer any good outside linebackers.  If you're fast enough to get to the passer and strong enough to tackle, you're a tight end.  No one would move Rob Gronkowski, but if you made his brother, Dan, a linebacker instead of a tight end the Pats would have a pass rush.

Posted by at June 28, 2012 5:29 AM

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