In June reports surfaced that free agent defensive end Leonard Little was leaning toward playing this season. But now it’s August, and Little isn’t in an NFL training camp, and he says he can’t decide if he wants to play or not.
“Sometimes I feel like I want to come back,” Little told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “Sometimes I feel like I don’t. It’s a hard decision to make when you’re used to playing football. I’ve been playing football since I was 5 years old.”
The 35-year-old Little isn’t the elite defensive end he once was, but he started 13 games for the Rams last season and recorded 6.5 sacks, and he’s good enough that some team would surely be willing to offer him a job as a situational pass rusher.
“There’s some teams interested,” Little said. “If I want to call ‘em and tell ‘em I’m ready to play, I think it’ll be a good chance I could join those specific teams. But I haven’t given anybody a definitive answer, so teams don’t know where I’m at right now.”
Little has played his entire 12-year career with the Rams and says the Rams are one of the interested teams. But he also acknowledged that there are still some people in St. Louis who have wanted him out of their community ever since he drove drunk and killed a woman named Susan Gutweiler in 1998.
“I know there are a lot of Rams fans that don’t even want to see me in a Rams uniform again,” Little said. “And I’ve got to keep that in mind, also, when making a decision. There’s people that want me to come back and there’s a lot of people that don’t want me to come back because I made some bad decisions in my career. And that’s understandable.”
But Little also hopes people can understand that he may decide he wants his career to go on at least one year longer.
“I’ve tried to isolate myself a little bit the last month or two, and just sit down and think about things,” Little said, “think about every possible scenario, and what I really want to do.”