Eagles legend Brian Westbrook mentored a young LeSean McCoy in Philadelphia during his rookie year. He should know the feisty kid from Harrisburg better than anyone since McCoy eventually took Westbrook’s starting job. So when old No. 36 says McCoy deserves a bust in Canton, then he probably does.
Westbrook racked up 5,995 rushing yards in midnight green and ranks third on the franchise’s all-time rushing list. That’s just 797 yards behind McCoy who owns the top spot. There has been much debate about whether McCoy will get into the Hall of Fame. The benchmark for running backs is around 12,000 career rushing yards. McCoy is still 930 yards shy of that number and not seeing much playing time in Tampa Bay.
“In my opinion, he is a Hall of Famer,” Westbrook told Heavy.com. “But I can see how some voters may look at him just coming short of that 12,000-yard mark as far as to hold him out of the Hall of Fame. But he’s done everything for me to prove he’s a game-changer, especially in his time period, that he should be considered for the Hall of Fame.”
LeSean McCoy has now passed Brian Westbrook for second all-time on the #Eagles rushing list.
— Dave Spadaro (@EaglesInsider) November 2, 2014
Let’s review the tape: six Pro Bowls, twice named first-team All-Pro, 11,070 career rushing yards (22nd in NFL history), 89 total touchdowns, a roster spot on the All-2010 Decade Team, and he’s a Super Bowl champion. McCoy — nicknamed Shady by his mother — led the entire NFL in rushing touchdowns in 2011 and finished first in rushing yards in 2013. He also has six seasons of at least 1,000 yards.
“He’s had some really good seasons,” Westbrook said. “I think the closer he gets to 12,000 yards, as far as rushing goes, the better his case will be for Hall of Fame. Unfortunately, he’s not getting a bunch of carries down there at this point in Tampa. He’s also a Super Bowl champion so he has certainly made a case for himself, with the things he’s been able to do on the field.”
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McCoy Loses Third-Down Role in Tampa
When McCoy first signed in Tampa Bay, it was thought he’d serve as the Buccaneers third-down back. He showed he had enough left in the tank last year in Kansas City where he rushed for 465 yards in a similar role. However, it hasn’t really worked out for him. Especially not after the Bucs signed Leonard Fournette.
McCoy has seen his snaps steadily decline since Week 6 with Tampa coach Bruce Arians officially naming Fournette the “nickel back” on Oct. 26. It’s been a struggle for the former Eagle to see the field and he has just six rushes for minus-1 yards in six games (74 total offensive snaps).
Arians says Leonard Fournette is now his "nickel" running back, playing in hurry-up and obvious passing situations, and that played a part in him getting more snaps in Sunday's win. Took that role from LeSean McCoy.
— Greg Auman (@gregauman) October 26, 2020
The Eagles had flirted with bringing McCoy back to serve as a complement and mentor to Miles Sanders. In the end, they passed on the 32-year-old veteran and he eventually inked a one-year deal in Tampa. McCoy is searching for his second Super Bowl ring after winning his first one last year in Kansas City.
“I want to be able to win another championship,” McCoy said in July, via NFL.com. “You can’t go from playing with the Chiefs with all that talent and winning a championship to now just trying to play. I’m the type of guy, I want to come in a room, challenge the running backs, get them better. Be a veteran leader.”
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