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Tomlinson says he’s “95 percent” retired

Kansas City Chiefs v New York Jets Getty Images

On Friday’s PFT Live, a Twitter question was considered regarding the status of running back LaDainian Tomlinson.  I explained (if I recall correctly, and there’s a chance I don’t) that the market for veteran running backs coupled with the fact that Tomlinson wouldn’t be playing special teams makes him far less attractive than a youngster with high tread on the tires and low financial expectations.

And so it’s unlikely that Tomlinson will play in 2012.

It’s even more unlikely, given that he says it’s highly unlikely.  Jim Trotter of Sports Illustrated recently tweeted that Tomlinson said he is “95 percent retired.”  Tomlinson added that it will take the right team and situation to get him to play again.

The “right team” is likely a Super Bowl contender, and the “right situation” is likely a depth chart where he would be no lower than No. 2.  And where he may get something more than the veteran minimum.

Barring an injury to a key player, Tomlinson likely won’t find what he wants.  And even if a first-string or second-string tailback tears a critical tendon or ligament, chances are that the team will back-fill with one of the many former college running backs who are more than capable of moving the chains if they are provided with blocking.

Even if he’s done, Tomlinson already has done enough to get to Canton, probably on the first try.  He’s fifth all-time in rushing yards (13,684), second all-time in rushing touchdowns (145), and third all-time in total touchdowns (162).  Tomlinson also owns a single-season record that could take on DiMaggio proportions, given the trend away from workhorse tailbacks and toward passing the ball heavily.  With 31 touchdowns in 2006, the closest any running back has come in the five seasons since then is LeSean McCoy, with 20 in 2011.

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64 Responses to “Tomlinson says he’s “95 percent” retired”
  1. mikebe1 says: May 6, 2012 9:57 PM

    Great Lt and we care about 5 percent.

  2. jeremywflores says: May 6, 2012 9:57 PM

    Sucks that he has to end his career as a Jet.

  3. walker615 says: May 6, 2012 9:59 PM

    It is pretty amazing how quickly and quietly his career has gone off a cliff. It makes sense given the ridiculous workload he had his first 10 years, but usually the impending end of an HOFer’s career has a bit more fanfair.

  4. nyyjetsknicks says: May 6, 2012 10:01 PM

    1st ballot. Enough said.

  5. blacknole08 says: May 6, 2012 10:02 PM

    Tomlinson was a beast in 2006. He had at least 3 or 4 games where he scored 4 TDs in a game. I don’t see a RB getting 25 total TDs in a season anytime soon.

  6. duanethomas says: May 6, 2012 10:02 PM

    All you math majors and “smart” guys on here (and there are many :( ). Riddle me this…..

    33 yr old runningback + younger cheaper RB’s on the market +no calls to my agent = What???

  7. 13fitzj says: May 6, 2012 10:04 PM

    Tiki barber….
    Is ecstatic! Less competition.
    Bet you thought I was going somewhere else with that.

  8. Fancybaseball says: May 6, 2012 10:06 PM

    It’s easy to imagine LT having success with Green Bay…and vice versa.

  9. tfbuckfutter says: May 6, 2012 10:07 PM

    Is it collusion if all 32 teams agree on the last 5%?

  10. habsman says: May 6, 2012 10:09 PM

    And he’s 100% a classy guy.

    Just ask him.

  11. lightcleric says: May 6, 2012 10:12 PM

    Hey, LT, take McNabb with you into retirement please…

  12. sepl12 says: May 6, 2012 10:12 PM

    He was the perfect example of how quickly an amazing RB can become ordinary, and then poor. I renumber talking about how he was going to crush every rushing record, and then he hit 29 and was used up. It’s going to be sad when AP becomes the next LT.

  13. raiderapologist says: May 6, 2012 10:17 PM

    Nice player in his day. Giant douche bag, too.

  14. tommyribs says: May 6, 2012 10:18 PM

    First Ballot Hall of Famer, Absoultely no Doubt.

    One of the Greatest EVER to lace them up.

    An Absolute Amazing player.

  15. benbilk33 says: May 6, 2012 10:19 PM

    Come be a packer…. you can teach the young rb crew a thing or two about pass protection and catch balls from Aaron Chuck Rodgers and have a shot at a ring!

    Good like finding a spot for the G tattoo tho

  16. slugdub says: May 6, 2012 10:19 PM

    buh bye

  17. birdbrainsnj says: May 6, 2012 10:22 PM

    Shady!!

  18. realnflmaster says: May 6, 2012 10:23 PM

    Should have played his whole career with gods team. The New York JETS.

    He’d have a couple rings for sure. Curtis Martin, the greatest back of all time passing the torch to LT.

  19. pftcensorssuck says: May 6, 2012 10:24 PM

    If by “95 percent retired” he means not one team offered him a contract, then yeah, he’s “95 percent retired”.

  20. chargersfan4life says: May 6, 2012 10:29 PM

    Thanks LT2 for all the great highlights, and your dedication to carry SD through your Charger Career. Wish you the best.
    LT2 for the Hall of Fame!!

  21. garyman1 says: May 6, 2012 10:30 PM

    So you’re saying there’s a chance ?

  22. khuxford says: May 6, 2012 10:35 PM

    I don’t think he would require a nice salary or to be no lower than the 2nd back on the team. I think he’d want to contribute, though, so the minimum with incentives on a team where he can be the 3rd down back.

  23. 2dollarpbrs says: May 6, 2012 10:35 PM

    What an idiot

  24. sanchize6 says: May 6, 2012 10:42 PM

    Surprised Florio didn’t take any cheap shots at the Jets in this story.

  25. rcali says: May 6, 2012 10:44 PM

    Does that mean he’s now eligible to sue the NFL for being a rough game?

  26. damaddhatter29 says: May 6, 2012 10:46 PM

    Wow! Did you just receive this news via telegram? It’s 2 days old already.

  27. damaddhatter29 says: May 6, 2012 10:49 PM

    Nevermind, it may have been pigeon post.

  28. pftcensorssuck says: May 6, 2012 10:51 PM

    realnflmaster says:May 6, 2012 10:23 PM

    Curtis Martin, the greatest back of all time passing the torch to LT.
    ———————————————————-
    Absolutely LOVED Curtis Martin here in New England, and I was even happy to see the success he had with the Jets.

    But the “greatest back of all time”???????

    Please, watch a little more football before you say something so stupid again.

  29. jonsnowsd12 says: May 6, 2012 10:52 PM

    That fact that he didnt get a ring is criminal.

  30. raiderrob21 says: May 6, 2012 10:57 PM

    It was all downhill when he went to the Jets. BUT he was great as a Charger. Many wars with you LT. Time to hang em up. Lets just forget you even played for the Jets tarnishing your career. See you in the Hall. Best wishes,
    The Raider Nation

  31. foul83 says: May 6, 2012 11:04 PM

    Nice career on ya, LT.

  32. bcgreg says: May 6, 2012 11:13 PM

    @ jonsnowsd12

    I’m glad he didn’t get a ring. When he had the best team–supposedly–he couldn’t beat the Pats on his home field. Then, he whines that the Pats danced on their field after the Chargers talked smack all week. At least the Pats had enough class to beat you first. Then, as his QB is on the field in the AFC title game the following year in NE with a torn ACL, he’s on the sideline with the same injury.

    Don’t mistake my comments to mean that I don’t think he was a great back, but I could give 2 sh**s if he has a ring or not. When it came to nut crunchin’ time, he–and his team with their terrible head coach–didn’t get it done–COULDN’T get it done. No sympathy here.

  33. clownsfan says: May 6, 2012 11:33 PM

    For about 4-5 yrs he was the best RB in the league. From September to December
    that is. Regular season champ Post season chump. Not gonna miss him or his mouth. Stay classy Ladanian.

  34. qwest12 says: May 6, 2012 11:36 PM

    Needs to come back to San Diego…we still have a place in our hearts for you lt

  35. 1historian says: May 6, 2012 11:37 PM

    There is one ‘Greatest Back of All Time’.

    His name is Jim Brown.

    He played 9 seasons, in 8 of them he gained 1,000 yards, and those were the days when they played 12 game seasons.

    He gained 5.2 yards per carry over his career.

    Granted there have been some great backs before and since but Jim Brown is the greatest ever.

    End of discussion

  36. hannahsdaddy says: May 6, 2012 11:47 PM

    Overrated!!!!!! Doooooschbag!!!!!! Besides that, he’s okay.

  37. brenenostler says: May 6, 2012 11:49 PM

    Just say 100 percent then. Teams don’t want you if only 5 percent of you wants to play.

  38. linvillegorge says: May 6, 2012 11:52 PM

    Denver? McGahee is no spring chicken either and Moreno is a bust. They still need depth there and worst case scenario Tomlinson would still be a viable 3rd down back.

  39. daknight93 says: May 7, 2012 12:25 AM

    too bad he won’t ever win a super bowl ring…I’m sure he has regrets joining the jets to finish his great career…wish LT the best in his post career after retirement

  40. footballfan84 says: May 7, 2012 12:41 AM

    Great career LT. So many yards and so many touchdowns. A definite Hall of Famer.

  41. konichiwabtches says: May 7, 2012 12:44 AM

    Can all you haters build a bridge, and get the f&@k over it already about the AFC title game!!
    LT is a beast, the best running back of the last decade, and a sure HOFer.
    Not to mention all the good he has done in the community.
    Give him the respect that he is earned .

  42. dgrowe213 says: May 7, 2012 1:08 AM

    jonsnowsd12 says:
    May 6, 2012 10:52 PM
    That fact that he didnt get a ring is criminal.

    ————————-

    After this year you can add Tony Gonzalez to that list too.

  43. jimiinpa says: May 7, 2012 1:13 AM

    and 95% of people don’t care

  44. jw5111 says: May 7, 2012 1:23 AM

    He was elite early in his career, not the same back after he stood on the sidelines with his visor while the Chargers fell in the playoffs. Still he’ll be in the Hall on the first ballot.

  45. davidschap says: May 7, 2012 1:27 AM

    Bcgreg. That was perfect and exactly what I think and have to remind people here all the time in San Diego. Let’s not forget McRee and Troy Brown. McRee takes a knee, and on to the next round.

    LT was a great running back but also a douche bag.

    Tell me if BB doesn’t make the call he doesn’t come running. But remember , BB is classless according to LT.

  46. chargerzz says: May 7, 2012 1:56 AM

    I remember those good ole days when he was a charger

  47. threedeep1998 says: May 7, 2012 2:26 AM

    Guy would be a stud 3rd down RB for MN or GB

  48. jedimasterbates says: May 7, 2012 3:21 AM

    Brett Favre said “I’ll see your 95% and raise you to… 98%.”

  49. joetoronto says: May 7, 2012 5:02 AM

    No Super Bowl for you, see ya.

  50. exibitsman says: May 7, 2012 5:17 AM

    He should have retired 2years ago

  51. warrenmoon says: May 7, 2012 7:00 AM

    The Raider Killer should play his last season for the Raiders. Seems like he plays his best games when he sees Raiders uniforms. Let’s put him in one and see what happens haha

  52. DonRSD says: May 7, 2012 7:04 AM

    The image of LT2 on the sideline during the afc championship game with his helmet on ala Ricky Williams is what I will remember most about LT2

  53. psychoraider904 says: May 7, 2012 8:03 AM

    The “right team”, would be anybody willing to sign him. This guy made his entire career, against a pathetic Raiders run defense. One of the most over-rated running backs of all-time. Go home L.T. nobody’s gonna miss you.

  54. freebird2011 says: May 7, 2012 8:54 AM

    First ballot Hall of Famer who has entered the “Tiki Barber” phase of his career.

  55. skins99 says: May 7, 2012 9:10 AM

    Who is he kidding with this “right situation” crap? He would jump thru hoops if the Indy Colts called him or any other crap team

  56. sd5547 says: May 7, 2012 9:53 AM

    Thank you for the special year 2006. 31 rushing touchdowns, 2 receiving touchdowns, 2 touchdown passes, and in 14 games!!!!

    He did not score in week 15 and played one quarter in week 16.

  57. bozosforall says: May 7, 2012 10:20 AM

    bcgreg says:
    May 6, 2012 11:13 PM
    @ jonsnowsd12

    I’m glad he didn’t get a ring. When he had the best team–supposedly–he couldn’t beat the Pats on his home field. Then, he whines that the Pats danced on their field after the Chargers talked smack all week. At least the Pats had enough class to beat you first. Then, as his QB is on the field in the AFC title game the following year in NE with a torn ACL, he’s on the sideline with the same injury.

    Don’t mistake my comments to mean that I don’t think he was a great back, but I could give 2 sh**s if he has a ring or not. When it came to nut crunchin’ time, he–and his team with their terrible head coach–didn’t get it done–COULDN’T get it done. No sympathy here.

    __
    The Chargers really should have invested in a sideline videocamera.

  58. jessethegreat says: May 7, 2012 10:59 AM

    1historian says: May 6, 2012 11:37 PM

    There is one ‘Greatest Back of All Time’.

    His name is Jim Brown.

    Granted there have been some great backs before and since but Jim Brown is the greatest ever.

    End of discussion
    —————————————————-
    I believe you’re confused son. Unless Walter Peyton’s nickname in some circles was Jim Brown, you’ve lost your mind. Sweetness was everything on and off the field.

    This is coming from a Packers fan that has a deep rooted hatred for everything Bears.

  59. rushmatic says: May 7, 2012 11:06 AM

    bozosforall says:
    May 7, 2012 10:20 AM
    bcgreg says:
    May 6, 2012 11:13 PM
    @ jonsnowsd12

    I’m glad he didn’t get a ring. When he had the best team–supposedly–he couldn’t beat the Pats on his home field. Then, he whines that the Pats danced on their field after the Chargers talked smack all week. At least the Pats had enough class to beat you first. Then, as his QB is on the field in the AFC title game the following year in NE with a torn ACL, he’s on the sideline with the same injury.

    Don’t mistake my comments to mean that I don’t think he was a great back, but I could give 2 sh**s if he has a ring or not. When it came to nut crunchin’ time, he–and his team with their terrible head coach–didn’t get it done–COULDN’T get it done. No sympathy here.

    __
    The Chargers really should have invested in a sideline videocamera.

    __________________________

    There isn’t a team in the league without one. I know that works against your schtick, but it’s true.

  60. jus10jonez says: May 7, 2012 11:08 AM

    You wanna bash LT2 for sittin with a torn acl when rivers was playin? Last time I checked, you need an acl to run, not to throw. All this hate must be comig from people who don’t like to see someone with class succeed.

  61. jason49er says: May 7, 2012 11:28 AM

    Arizona is usually the place future hall of fame backs go to die. Emmitt Smith, Edgerrin James…surprised they didn’t add LT to compliment Beanie Wells. I know they drafted Ryan Williams but that’s a hell of an injury.

    LT joins the list of guys like T.O. who could definitely help a team but teams would rather pay a rookie minimum than a veteran minimum to someone with a big mouth.

  62. finsbooyah says: May 7, 2012 11:43 AM

    Hey, I’m sick of his arrogance too. But, there is absolutely no question that he belongs in the Hall of Fame on his first try.

    In his prime in San Diego he was the best RB of a generation. It’s easy to forget because it’s been a while since he’s played at that level, but this guy was like no other. A truly all time elite player.

  63. finsbooyah says: May 7, 2012 11:45 AM

    jessethegreat says:
    May 7, 2012 10:59 AM
    1historian says: May 6, 2012 11:37 PM

    There is one ‘Greatest Back of All Time’.

    His name is Jim Brown.

    Granted there have been some great backs before and since but Jim Brown is the greatest ever.

    End of discussion
    —————————————————-
    I believe you’re confused son. Unless Walter Peyton’s nickname in some circles was Jim Brown, you’ve lost your mind. Sweetness was everything on and off the field.

    This is coming from a Packers fan that has a deep rooted hatred for everything Bears.

    ————————————————

    I’m going to go ahead and disagree with both of you. Barry Sanders was the best I’ve ever seen. And he did it with absolutely no help from his teammates.

  64. jessethegreat says: May 8, 2012 12:54 AM

    I’m going to go ahead and disagree with both of you. Barry Sanders was the best I’ve ever seen. And he did it with absolutely no help from his teammates.
    —————————————————-
    Barry may have been electric… but he was a quitter plain and simple. I’m probably in the minority that thinks even Emmitt was better than Barry.

    I remember many plays where Barry danced around behind the line of scrimmage and lost yards. Emmitt just pounded and pounded. You could always count on Emmitt.

    Ask yourself a question before you discredit my idea. . . 4th quarter leading by less than one score who do you want to grind out the clock? I don’t know anyone alive besides a blind Lions homer that would pick Barry.

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