EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - OCTOBER 11: Frank Gore #21 of the New York Jets follows the action against the Arizona Cardinals at MetLife Stadium on October 11, 2020 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Arizona Cardinals defeated the New York Jets 30-10.
(Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick respects “tough” and “durable” New York Jets’ veteran running back Frank Gore.

Frank Gore’s 15,687 rushing yards place him third on the NFL’s all-time leading rusher list. If that isn’t impressive enough, the idea that the 37-year-old man is still manning down a position that severely caters to youth introduces unicorn status.

The New York Jets‘ next opponent is the New England Patriots, which means Bill Belichick will once again square off against the future Pro Football Hall of Fame back. Such a matchup has occurred many times over the last 16 years and Belichick’s front-row seat has planted respect in his mind.

“[I have a] tremendous amount of respect for Frank,” Belichick told the media on Friday. “He’s had a great, great career — incredibly durable, tough, consistent. He has a great playing style. I know he gives great leadership and toughness to the teams he’s been on — I mean, that’s really legendary. But, yeah, I have a tremendous amount of respect competing against him. He’s had one of the great careers at his position in the National Football League. Just very, very impressive.”

From his devastating ACL injury in college (while at Miami University in 2002) to the very same injury to his other knee just a year later, nobody could have predicted the man’s incredible durability throughout his long NFL career.

Gore has missed just 14 games of a possible 256 in 16 seasons (injury or otherwise). He’s incredibly missed just two contests over the last 10 years. That’s a full decade of games while playing the majority of it in his 30s.

Frank Gore’s 340 yards on 96 carries in 2020 gives him an unimpressive 3.5 yards per carry. He and the Jets (without Sam Darnold) are currently preparing for the incoming New England Patriots which includes Bill Belichick, who, yet again, will have a front-row seat.

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