LeSean McCoy is about to hit a big milestone Bobby Massie Jersey , when he turns 30 next week. But the Bills running back has a few big ones on the field he wants to reach before he’s done.
Speaking to reporters at his hometown football camp, McCoy said he’s motivated to reach 12,000 yards, after topping 10,000 last season.
“I have more to prove,” he said, via PennLive.com. “It’s just like, ‘How long can he do it? How long can he keep being productive?’ And that drives me. It really does.”
Of course, there were plenty of milestones hit last year, as the Bills broke a 17-year streak of not making the playoffs.But since then, they’ve overhauled the quarterback position http://www.dallascowboysteamonline.com/connor-williams-jersey , getting rid of Tyrod Taylor and bringing in Josh Allen and A.J. McCarron. But more importantly to McCoy, they’ve blown up the middle of the line, as they’ll go into the season without Eric Wood and Richie Incognito.
McCoy said he still has a few more pounds to lose before camp, noting that he has “tightened up” his diet.
“It’s easy to put the weight on, but it’s harder to take it off,” he said.
He may find the same is true of his stat line, that the target numbers are harder to acquire, the older you get.
When Bruce Irvin got a multimillion dollar signing bonus after being a first-round draft pick in 2012, the idea of getting his college degree was the last thing on his mind.
A former high school dropout who spent time in jail and dealing drugs while growing up in Atlanta, Irvin later decided to set an example for his 5-year-old son Brayden and show that he is more than just a professional athlete.
”When kids come up to him, they can say that his dad was a good football player and he can stop them and say he was a good football player but he also got his associate’s degree Xavier Woods Jersey , got his bachelor’s degree,” Irvin said. ”He wasn’t only a football player. He put education up there right along with his job. It was bigger than me. It was for my son and his kids and generations after me.”
From the troublesome childhood that he detailed last year in a Player’s Tribune article titled ”The Things I’ve Done ,” Irvin has developed into a leader on the Raiders and in the community, earning a nomination for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award.
He will have made more than $36 million playing football at the end of this season, winning one Super Bowl with Seattle and earning plenty of other accolades. But walking on stage to get his degree back in May goes right near the top of his accomplishments.
”The odds were stacked up against me to get my bachelor’s degree. It was a surreal moment,” he said. ”I kind of put it up there with the Super Bowl, neck and neck. Super Bowl probably would have been better if we’d won two in a row. It was a great moment, not only for me but for my son and my family. I’m glad I got to experience it.”
Irvin was one of several NFL players who earned college degrees this offseason, taking advantage of a program negotiated in the collective bargaining agreement that provides tuition reimbursement for players seeking to continue their education.
Players can earn up to $60,000 in tuition reimbursement based on their time in the league. Arthur McAfee, the senior vice president of NFL Player Engagement Peyton Manning Jersey , said about two dozen players each year earn their degrees through the program. He added that the increased time off under the current collective bargaining agreement has made the process easier for players interested in getting their degrees.
”We try to find the appropriate balance between the players having opportunity to go back as well as manage their offseason schedule,” McAfee said. ”The current format of the offseason schedule provides us with ample opportunity for players to find that time to work toward their degree.”
The most high-profile case this offseason was Kansas City Chiefs guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who became the first active NFL player to get his medical degree when he earned his from McGill University in Montreal just over a year after signing a $41.25 million, five-year contract.
”When I got drafted in 2014 it was a promise that I made to myself that I was going to keep grinding and keep pushing to combine my two passions at the highest level and show people it was possible,” Duvernay-Tardif said.
Duvernay-Tardif, a sixth-round pick in 2014, did most of his graduate work in the offseason, taking advantage of the increased time off for players provided in the current CBA.
Duvernay-Tardif did take one orthopedic exam during a bye week in 2015, spending a flight back from London studying while his teammates celebrated. While some teams were wary of his desire to become a doctor, Duvernay-Tardif said Chiefs coach Andy Reid has always been extremely supportive.
”Coach Reid it was the total opposite. It was like
If you’re here and you still have medicine as a plan B it’s because you really love to play football and I’m going to help you to the best of my ability,”’ Duvernay-Tardif said. ”That’s what he’s been doing for the past four years. Every season at the end of the season during our exit meeting he’s been asking mewhat’s next for you doc?’ and we’ve been talking about different clinical rotations and stuff. And his mother actually went to McGill University and was one of the first women to graduate in medicine Pierre Desir Jersey , so there was a little bit of a connection and I really think that he helped me through the process. I don’t think it would have been possible if it was not for him.”
The Raiders have also been extremely supportive of players pursuing their degrees in the offseason and got to watch four players don their caps and gowns over two weekends this offseason. Star receiver Amari Cooper (Alabama), starting right guard Gabe Jackson (Mississippi State) and backup tackle Jylan Ware (Alabama State) all graduated this offseason thanks to the tuition assistance and guidance from the team.
Annelie Schmittel, who works on the Raiders player engagement staff, has been heavily involved in helping the players do what they need to graduate and even went to West Virginia for Irvin’s ceremony earlier this offseason. She hopes the recent graduates serve as role models for young players just entering the league.
”That’s something no one can take away from them,” Schmittel said. ”It’s great having guys like Amari, Bruce, Gabe, starters on this team, veterans who have played in this league a long time and don’t really need a degree but wanted to go back and finish what they started. That’s incredible to see and for us to see because we’re seeing the hard work that they put in. … It’s a really proud moment. We’re really involved in it because it’s such a huge accomplishment for us.”
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