When you think of guys in the NFL who had successful careers despite being undersized, running back Darren Sproles is among the first. Listed at only 5-foot-6, Sproles had a long 15-year career with the Los Angeles Chargers, New Orleans Saints and Philadelphia Eagles, utilizing his speed and elusiveness to evade would-be tacklers.
As a result of his talent and body of work, Sproles was selected to three straight Pro Bowls from 2014-16 and was recently named to the NFL All-Decade team for 2010-2019. However, a glaring omission from the All-Decade team is former Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte, and Sproles taking his spot is even more egregious.
Yes Sproles was a clear threat in the rushing and passing game as well as on special teams. Yet the same can be said of Matt Forte, who was named to the Pro Bowl twice in those 10 years. In 2014, Forte finished with 1,038 yards on the ground and 838 yards through the air..
Forte has 554 receptions for his career -- nearly identical with Sproles -- and finished with 19 more touchdowns as well as nearly 5,000 more rushing yards. If the "flex" position is meant to be a player who is a threat both rushing and receiving, doesn't Forte fit that profile perfectly?
This isn't meant to disrespect Sproles, who had an illustrious career of his own. However, Forte molded his entire game around being a dual threat back and was extremely successful at it. He has the stats to prove he was more deserving of this honor over Sproles.