James Develin announces his retirement

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The Patriots won’t have fullback James Develin back this year.

In a post to his Instagram account on Monday, Develin announced that he is retiring from the NFL. Develin went on injured reserve last year after hurting his neck and he said the fallout from that injury has led to his decision to walk away from the game.

“Due to unforeseen complications with the injury that ended my season last year, I have decided it is both in my and my family’s best interest to retire from the game of football,” Develin wrote.

Develin played defensive line at Brown and played in the Arena League and UFL before signing with the Bengals in 2011. He spent a year on the practice squad and then joined the Patriots in 2012.

Develin played one game that year and then appeared in every game over the next five seasons. He ran for five regular season touchdowns, added another in the playoffs after the 2014 season and ends his career with three Super Bowl rings.

22 responses to “James Develin announces his retirement

  1. Fullback is a thankless position, and he was a warrior in the trenches.

    Thanks for 8 great years, James!

  2. Cant say this is much of a surprise, though it is disappointing now that it is reality. The way his season ended last year, there has been talk of him not being able to come back. And thats sad, because you know everyone wants to walk away on their own terms. He was a great player for the Patriots. They had a role for him, and he executed his role, and the fans in New England love players like Devlin. He will be missed. But he is making a smart decision.

  3. Pretty great career to look back on…..much health and happiness in your retirement.

  4. The trading up and drafting of Dalton Keene in the 3rd round makes more sense now.

  5. Will miss watching the guy clearing the way and making his own plays, but I’m relieved he’s retiring. A neck injury is just too risky. I hope he finds a post-football career that he enjoys.

  6. Dude was a pivotal role for this team. Patriots are really in trouble next year. I see Gilmore, cannon, Hightower, and Edelman being traded before the year starts. Total rebuild.

  7. One of the last true fullbacks. Best lead blocker since Lorenzo Neal and bulldozed his way into championships. The game will miss him.

  8. He’ll be missed but very smart not to mess with his neck, especially since his job was hammering his body into bigger bodies.

    Thanks for all the hard work and good luck in the future James!

  9. “I see Gilmore, cannon, Hightower, and Edelman being traded before the year starts. Total rebuild.”

    Ludicrous. I’m sure they can find another FB. Yes he was a largely unsung hero type but he’s far from the straw that breaks the camels back.

    Not to mention Belichik never rebuilds, he just reloads and sets his eyes on winning each game one at a time.

  10. harrisonhits2 says:
    April 27, 2020 at 2:13 pm

    I’m sure they can find another FB.
    The signed Danny Vitale in March, so yes, it should be easy to find a guy that is already on their team.

  11. $7,176,550 Earned in 10 years for one of the toughest jobs in the game.

    Mamma don’t let your babies grow up to be fullbacks.

  12. streetyson says:
    April 27, 2020 at 1:56 pm
    Fallback position for the fullback position is Jakob Johnson.


    And the team was high on him before he was hurt. Hasn’t really shown much in a game in his limited opportunity, but the line was really messed up at that time.

  13. People forget the signing of Dan Vitale from the Packers. That was their biggest signing in Free Agency. Which is sort of funny to think about when it happened, and at the same time, probably true now that Develin retired

  14. Awesome player and another example of Bill taking someone nobody had a clue what to do with, and molding him into a great player. Great career bro and smart move stepping away when you did enjoy the retirement

  15. It will take a while to get anyone to play up to Develin’s standards. It’s why the Patriots running game was a bust last year.

  16. Thanks, James! I have had a neck injury myself, which has often affected me as I sit in a chair staring at a computer. I can’t even imagine trying to play football.

  17. They have Vitale and Jacob Johansson… I also see Cassh Maluia the ILB from Wyoming as a potential FB per his experience in high school and college in that role. He is 6’243 and runs a 4.59.

    What they’ll miss most is Devlins intelligence. A Brown grad who moved from DE to TE to Fullback.

  18. I also see Cassh Maluia the ILB from Wyoming as a potential FB per his experience in high school and college in that role. He is 6’243 and runs a 4.59.
    Thought the same thing.

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