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NFL’s Naked Truth With Running Backs Exposed, Days After O.J. Simpson Single-Handedly Slapped $196M Fortress

Published 07/20/2023, 11:19 AM EDT

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The RB situation in the NFL is currently a hot topic of discussion. This position is one of the most physically demanding positions in the game. Yet, franchises overlook their star performers in the running back department, who are the main ball carriers on running plays. But surprisingly enough, when it comes to monetary compensation, the average salary of running backs is $1.81 million, while the average salary of a kicker is $2.26 million in 2023. 

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So why are running backs in the NFL underpaid? What could be the reason that their salaries do not match the demanding nature of their position in the NFL? Well, the reason stems from a mistake that was made a few years ago in the league.

This is why running backs are underpaid


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 The NFL world was sent into a state of shock when the Las Vegas Raiders and New York Giants were unable to crack long-term deals with their star RBs, Josh Jacobs and Saquon Barkley. Jacobs was the lead rusher last season with 1,653 yards, followed by Barkley in fourth with 1,312 yards. So why weren’t the teams able to come up with suitable long-term deals for these star running backs of their teams?

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Well, according to an article by the Los Angeles Times, the reason dates back to 2018. Back then, Los Angeles Rams signed RB Todd Gurley to a four-year $57 million extension. This decision was taken even after he had two years left on his rookie contract. The Rams then realized that they were paying Gurley $20 million more than they were required to. And with his productivity decaying because of knee injuries, they cut him from the team in 2020, at the age of 25. This is the reason why the situation for RBs is bleak in the league today, as teams want to avoid making such mistakes.


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Patrick Mahomes Faces Scorching Fury for Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs Financial Crunch


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Many players have taken to social media to criticize the situation of running backs in 2023. Even ex-NFL star OJ Simpson spoke up on the same, giving his two cents on the topic that is becoming a highlight of the league.

OJ Simpson speaks up

Recently, the ex-NFL star took to Twitter to share a video where he voiced his dismay over the way the Raiders and the Giants were handling their RB situation. Simpson argued that both Jacobs and Barkley deserve to earn the same as Alvin Kamara and Christian McCaffrey, who earn around $15-$16 million a year. The Juice then went on to state that “Running backs deserve better”, talking about how running backs are not getting the respect or compensation that they deserve in the NFL.


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Do you think that the league should focus on improving the underpaid situation of running backs? And if so, how? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Priyam Hazarika


One take at a time

Priyam Hazarika is a ‘freshman’ at EssentiallySports. He was picked in the latest round of ‘ES Draft’ when we picked young writers with plenty of passion for NFL writing. Still in his early days, Priyam is driven by the words of wisdom from one of the greatest NFL coaches, Vince Lombardi: “Winning is not everything — but making the effort to win is.
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