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Where's Leonard Fournette? A Healthy Fournette Remains Unsigned Despite Injuries at Running Back


Leonard Fournette, 28, should be signed by now, with the mounting injuries at running back. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG
Leonard Fournette, 28, should be signed by now, with the mounting injuries at running back. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG

Leonard Fournette's journey through the NFL has been a rollercoaster ride of highs and lows, but recently, it seems he's stuck at a crossroads with no clear path ahead. A mere year ago, Fournette was a vital cog in a playoff-bound team, showcasing his versatility by accumulating over 1,100 yards in total offense and proving naysayers wrong about his receiving skills with an impressive 73 receptions.



Leonard Fournette had some remarkable moments with the Buccaneers. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG
Leonard Fournette had some remarkable moments with the Buccaneers. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG

In 2022, he silenced critics who doubted his pass-catching ability by catching 73 passes, his highest total since 2019, when he needed 100 targets to achieve just three more receptions. Adding six touchdowns to his resume—three rushing and three receiving—underscored his value to the team. Fournette's playoff performance in the preceding year even earned him the moniker "Playoff Lenny."

However, as we fast forward to today, we find a perplexing situation: a healthy Leonard Fournette remains unsigned, with no reported visits on the horizon. Fournette did explore the possibility of joining the New England Patriots this offseason, but nothing materialized. A similar visit occurred in 2022, although he eventually re-signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


The NFL landscape has changed drastically since then. Injuries have decimated the running back position for several teams. Nick Chubb's season-ending injury for the Browns, David Montgomery's week 2 setback with the Lions, Saquon Barkley's ankle sprain, Jamal Williams' injury for the Saints, and Austin Ekeler's ongoing issues have created a dire need for capable running backs.



The Vikings were in serious need of a running back, so they traded for Cam Akers. Why not sign Fournette? Photo Credit: @ESPNStatsInfo
The Vikings were in serious need of a running back, so they traded for Cam Akers. Why not sign Fournette? Photo Credit: @ESPNStatsInfo

The question arises: why has Fournette remained unsigned despite these opportunities? Some argue that Fournette lacked explosiveness last season, and his modest 3.5 yards per carry and lowest touchdown total since 2019 raise concerns. If he's such a dynamic player, why wouldn't the Buccaneers rush to re-sign him?


Fournette himself has maintained faith in his abilities, proclaiming "There's Greater Later" in a workout video posted on August 21. He appeared in excellent shape, dispelling any notions of weight issues. However, despite his conviction, NFL teams appear hesitant.


The Chargers, Lions, Saints, Giants, and Ravens all have glaring running back needs, yet none have extended an invitation to Fournette. Even the Browns, who recently signed Kareem Hunt to a one-year, $4 million deal, haven't shown interest in Fournette.



Leonard Fournette has been making great use of his time, spending quality time with his family. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG
Leonard Fournette has been making great use of his time, spending quality time with his family. Photo Credit: leonardfournette IG

Recently, Fournette has been visible on social media, sharing his workouts and spending quality time with his children. He's also secured sponsorship deals with companies like Domino's Pizza and Shell. But the burning question remains: how many more running backs must fall before Fournette gets his shot?


So, where is Lenny? The NFL landscape can change swiftly, and there's no doubt that Fournette has the talent to make a significant impact. It's time for teams with playoff aspirations to take notice and give Leonard Fournette the chance to reclaim his glory on the football field.

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