Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Frank Gore will likely retire with an extremely clean 16,000 rushing yards over 16 seasons

With 16,000 yards on the ground, the third most ever, it’s been a hell of a career for Frank Gore.
With 16,000 yards on the ground, the third most ever, it’s been a hell of a career for Frank Gore.
Photo: Getty Images

Frank Gore is a damn legend and you will never convince me otherwise.

The veteran running back, who is wildly underrated, is currently sitting third all-time in rushing yards with —I kid you not — 16,000 exactly. He has compiled this beautifully round number over a 16-season career.

In baseball, we unofficially have the “Mendoza line,” named after former Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop Mario Mendoza, to signify a mediocre batting average of .200.

If Frank Gore hangs it up this offseason (which I would love to see him do with these perfectly clean statistics), I propose that the “Gore Line” henceforth and forevermore be used to define an exceptional running back who averages over 1,000 rushing yards per season over their career.

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The 37-year-old running back began his career with the San Francisco 49ers, and after taking over as the team’s starter in his second season, he amassed over 1,000 yards in eight out of nine years — his only season falling short was a season that saw him start only 11 games due to injury. He was the consummate professional, a tough, physical, consistent punisher of a running back.

One reason I could see Gore potentially coming back is the fact that he’s 726 rushing yards behind Walter Payton for second all-time. However, working in a complimentary role at this point in his career and averaging only 3.5 yards per carry, he would be hard-pressed to make a realistic run at the No. 2 spot on that list.

Father Time appears to have finally caught up with Gore. Going out with such a clean stat line would be fitting for the perennially underrated legend, who will be on his way to Canton as soon as he calls it a career.

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