While he wasn’t a household name, the former Bengal has had a successful NFL career.
Many Bengals running backs have departed the team in recent decades to find postseason success with future Hall of Fame quarterback Tom Brady. The most prominent example was the infamous Corey Dillon, who walked out on Cincinnati during a game in 2004. After the season’s final game, Dillon ceremoniously flung his pads into the seats and would never play another down for the squad in his career. While he had a difficult departure from the squad, there are other players who will be remembered fondly in the Queen City.
Four-year Bengals running back retires after ten seasons in the NFL.
On Monday afternoon, Rex Burkhead, Cincinnati’s 2013 sixth-round draft pick, announced his retirement from the NFL. Burkhead spent four seasons in Cincinnati and was part of the elite trio of running backs in the city during the 2015 season, which included Burkhead as the receiving back, Jeremy Hill as the power back, and Giovani Bernard as the scat back.
Burkhead made the announcement on his social media channels.
“I’ve been blessed to be able to play the game of football for 26 years and looking back there are many people I would like to thank,” Burkhead said in a statement. He proceeded to acknowledge his
Parents; wife, Danielle; two children; coaches; ownership and support staff; teammates; and fans.
Burkhead attended the University of Nebraska and was taken late in the 2013 NFL Draft by Cincinnati, who hoped to transform him into the team’s version of New England Patriots playoff hero James White. After spending his rookie season on the practice squad, White would be an ideal backup for the team because he could run, receive, and block from either the running back or slot receiver positions.
After departing Cincinnati in 2017, Burkhead spent four seasons with the New England Patriots, where he played a vital role in the team’s 2019 Super Bowl LII victory over the Los Angeles Rams. While Burkhead failed to see the field in Cincinnati, he was a reliable check-down option for Brady in the Northeast. After his time with the Patriots, Burkhead played the remaining two seasons of his career for the Houston Texans. He had his greatest season with Houston in 2021, totaling 427 running yards.
Burkhead will complete his career with 1,908 running yards and 1,534 receiving yards, as he was a reliable utility option in the NFL during his 10-year career. I wish Burkhead and his family a joyful retirement after a relatively long NFL career as a running back.
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