After running back Steven Jackson left the Rams but before he joined the Falcons, he considered another option.
“I was thinking about maybe retiring,” Jackson said Friday, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I really considered that. . . . I really contemplated ‘do I continue to play football’ or ‘do I retire.’ That’s one thing I admire about Barry Sanders.”
Jackson, who has played one less season than Sanders did, ultimately decided to keep going. And that’s good news for the Falcons.
“I have a never-[say]-die attitude,” Jackson said. “That is something that I plan on bringing to this team. They don’t need much; they are already a good team. . . . I’ll try to bring leadership and that relentlessness to this team.”
His never-say-die approach used to include a never-take-a-break mindset. He realizes that, in Atlanta, he won’t have to knock himself out.
“Early in my career, I took great pride in being in the bell cow, the one guy that you could always depend on,” Jackson said. “I’ve learned that over the years you did need some extra guys on your team to be successful in this league. To be another tool in the tool box is quite all right with me.”
It’s quite all right with the Falcons, and their fans.
It may not be all right with the guys on the all-time rushing list whom Jackson, now 26th with 10,135 rushing yards, will be passing.