Heading into 9th NFL season, Mark Ingram shares big-picture goals for rest of career
Through eight NFL seasons, Mark Ingram has 6,007 rushing yards on 1,321 carries. Alabama’s first Heisman Trophy winner wants to get his yardage up to five digits before he hangs it up.
“I’m going into my ninth year, I feel like I’m better than ever,” Ingram said in a recent visit to “The Rich Eisen Show.” “I feel like my career’s still going up. I want to rush for 10,000 yards. Clearly, I want to win the Super Bowl. I just want to keep pressing forward, keep doing the best I can do and just control what I can control.”
While Ingram has his sights set on a championship, it’s not certain yet where he’ll be playing in 2019. His contract with the New Orleans Saints is up. The Saints have less than a month to come to an agreement with Ingram before he potentially hits free agency on March 13.
“I’ve been talking to the Saints,” Ingram said. “It’s kind of like a thing where they say they want me back, I say, ‘I want to be back,’ it’s just can we compromise on the value?”
For a running back, being 29 years old heading into Year 9 of a career is viewed as “getting up there,” but Ingram points out that he has been sharing carries throughout his career, giving him low mileage for an eight-year veteran.
“I believe that I have many good years of football left in me,” Ingram said. “They say I’m 29 years old, but if you just look at the backfields that I’ve been in, the shared carries I’ve had, you could count me as a six-year back.
“(Los Angeles Rams RB Todd) Gurley’s played four years, and I think I only have 200 more carries than him. Le’Veon Bell’s played six years, I only have 90 more carries than him, and he missed this whole year. So he’d probably have more than me. So my age — I am 29 — but at the same time I feel like the wear and tear I’ve had on my body is minimal, and I feel like my best years — I’ve still got four more years, at least, of playing elite football for somebody.”
We’ll find out soon if those four more years are with the Saints, or perhaps another Super Bowl contender.