Eagles running back Darren Sproles turns 34 today, which is ancient for an NFL running back: Sproles and Frank Gore are the only 34-year-old running backs currently under contract to any NFL team.
So Sproles has a lot of experience making defenders miss. And today, in honor of his birthday, the Eagles revealed just how much experience by posting a video of Sproles’ Pop Warner highlights. The video is amusing mostly for how inept the other kids look trying to tackle Sproles, who had the same speed and shiftiness as an elementary schooler that he has today.
Sproles, wearing a helmet and shoulder pads that look oversized on his tiny body, looks into the camera and says, “I am Darren, I’m #43 and I’m a running back.” The rest of the video consists of Sproles making the opposing defense look like, well, a bunch of uncoordinated little kids trying to catch a future Pro Bowler.
Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times wrote in 2015 that Sproles’ Pop Warner league in Olathe, Kansas, changed its rules to prevent him from running outside the tackles because he went entire games without anyone being able to bring him down. That sounds like an awfully extreme measure for a youth league to take, but these highlights show there was no other way to stop young Darren Sproles.