Despite his success, Fournette will not be eligible for the NFL Draft until 2017, following his junior season.
During a conference call on Monday, ahead of Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson offered a few perspective when looking back at his own situation. Peterson wrapped up his freshman season at Oklahoma in 2004 with 1,860 yards & 15 touchdowns, & completed 2nd in Heisman voting behind Matt Leinart. Once he got to the pros, he played less than half a game in his first season after undergoing knee surgery. Why not? OK? I can’t imagine that Leonard would be sitting anywhere inactive for a fall. What if he has a financial position that offsets injury?
That’s the kind of thing that happens when a true sophomore rushes for 631 yards in three games and has vaulted himself into the position of being the early favorite to win the Heisman Trophy.
The running back took to Twitter on Wednesday to seemingly address concerns that he’d attempt to leave LSU early to challenge the NFL’s entry rules.
It seems to be a given by now that Leonard Fournette is going to run all over opposing defenses.
“If you’re gainfully employed and you’re sitting in front of a microphone, you have to say something that stirs the pot”. He’ll do the right thing. And when anyone suggests that the players should make business decisions, those within the cocoon break out the clichés and the T-shirt slogans in order to persuade them not to think about the only team that really matters – their families. That would be the only “what if” that I’d have a real issue with: ‘What if somebody just talked enough to make a mess?’ I don’t know.
ESPN’s Mark Dominik, former Director of Pro Personnel and GM of the Buccaneers and one of the best football minds on TV, joined Danny Kanell and Ryen Russillo to discuss the topic, with Dominik concluding that Fournette could play in the NFL right now. “Just wait and your time will come”.