SportsNation Blog ArchivesSN Blog Archives Brian Westbrook

It's not a good month to be a formerly-dominant NFL running back. First, LaDainian Tomlinson got the boot from the Chargers; now, Brian Westbrook is getting the same treatment from the Eagles.

Westbrook has been plagued by concussions in recent years, including one this season that put his career in jeopardy. Still, when healthy, he's a dual-threat, dangerous out of the backfield as a rusher or receiver. That's one big IF, however.

Westbrook and Tomlinson aren't the only veteran free agents on the market, as big names like Julius Peppers and Terrell Owens could make an impact on a contender. Only one thing is certain; the Eagles are left with a huge hole to fill.

J.B. (Dunmore, PA)

M-Dub: With Westbrook now out in Philly, can you see Andy Reid actually giving McCoy a chance to run the football?

Matt Williamson
Matt Williamson

No. His role will grow. Weaver should remain in the mix and they will prob add another RB in the draft. But, as always, they are going to throw and throw a ton. McCoy needs to improve on his protection, but you need to remember, that this is still a very young player-came out as a Soph. Full transcript

Steve (Atlanta, GA)

Do you think Westbrook will find a home or is he destined to retire this year?

Matt Williamson
Matt Williamson

Can he pass a physical? Will a doc clear him with his concussions? Could see him as a 3rd down RB still, but not an everydown guy. Full transcript

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There's little doubt who the best running back in football is these days; he's the guy that has more states than Minnesota native Walter Mondale carried in 1984 voting for the Vikings to win the NFC North despite Brett Favre's decision to stay retired.

As long as you have Adrian Peterson, you have a chance. Then again, that's not altogether different from how people felt about Larry Johnson as the 2007 NFL season approached.

You remember Johnson, the guy who rushed for 1,789 yards on a record 416 carries in 2006, a year after topping 1,700 yards with 20 touchdowns in a breakout campaign. Back in June, 2007, voters said he was the second-best back in the game (granted, Secretariat's margin of victory in the Belmont was a photo finish in comparison to LaDainian Tomlinson's lead) and clearly the Chiefs' most indispensable player.

Now it's 2009 and despite better than 800 yards last season, Johnson can't get a sniff when it comes to the backs "SportsNation" (4 p.m. ET, ESPN2) is asking voters to rank for Thursday's show. Just more proof that success can be fleeting at one of the NFL's most physically demanding positions. Be forewarned, Vikings fans.

The Mini Ditkas

wonder where RBs that had a goodly amount of carries combined with a goodly amount of receptions fit in in all this? For example: Matt Forte had 316 carries last year, far below the 370 curse mark, but also caught 63 passes...combined touches 379, so he's over the limit. May not mean anything at all, but I expect to see a drop off in his production this year simply because teams will scheme to shut him down more, IMO.

-- The Mini Ditkas

L.T. will duplicate his numbers from last season, and I can tell you now.. I spent too much time watching him log around 50 yards with zero scores to rest easy. Time to find a new horse for my squad.

-- noodlerii

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