Tiki Barber: Melvin Gordon "Getting Used Up"

Gordon wants a new contract, but will the Chargers give him one?

Tiki and Tierney
July 11, 2019 - 7:00 pm
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It appears Melvin Gordon is pulling a Le’Veon Bell. The Chargers running back wants a new contract, and if he does not get one, he will not report to training camp

Gordon, 26, is in the final year of his contract. He will make $5.6 million under the fifth-year option.

A first-round pick in 2015, Gordon averaged 114.6 scrimmage yards per game last season – the most by a Chargers player since LaDainian Tomlinson, who averaged 121.8 in 2007 – and scored 14 touchdowns.

And now he wants to get paid. If not, he will demand a trade.

“It brings me back to this disrespect that comes at the running back position, and I can’t think of a solution,” Tiki Barber said. “Melvin Gordon has had a fantastic couple of years scoring touchdowns. It’s ridiculous. If you have Melvin Gordon on your fantasy team, you are loving it because he’s getting in the end zone literally almost every week. But we know the position is being devalued.”

Gordon has averaged 283.5 touches over the last two seasons. Ezekiel Elliott has topped the 350 mark twice in three seasons. Saquon Barkley had 352 as a rookie. Christian McCaffrey had 326 in 2018.

“When you put on 360 touches a season, they’re getting used,” Barber said. “They’re getting used up. The reason that we start to see running backs drafted in the first round is the same reason that you see quarterbacks getting drafted in the first round – not because you want to hold on to them for five years with the fifth-year option and then sign them to a long-term deal; you want to hold on to them for five years and use them up.”