Antonio Gibson - Commanders RB
One of the big topics last offseason was the reluctance of almost every NFL team to pay running backs the going rate. Some teams relented. Others stood their ground. But there's no doubt it could be the start of an ongoing trend around the league.
This might be unfair, but the NFL is a business above all else. The Washington Commanders will keep this in mind when the time comes to discuss Antonio Gibson's future.
Gibson is a 1,000-yard running back. He's been utilized more in the passing game thanks in no small part to the emergence of Brian Robinson Jr. over the last two years, who's emerged as a genuine three-down backfield presence under Eric Bieniemy's guidance. What this means for his future beyond the current campaign remains to be seen.
The Commanders have Robinson to carry the load under a new regime. Sixth-rounder Chris Rodriguez Jr. has flashed enough promise to suggest he could be a nice complimentary piece with another offseason of development under his belt.
Paying Gibson seems unlikely. Much will depend on the financial demands outlined by his representatives, but the allure of a cheaper player from the college ranks who could be equally as impressive is too tempting to ignore.
Couple the current trend with a new analytics-based approach becoming prevalent under Josh Harris' ownership group, and it's not hard to see Gibson's 2023 season could be his last in Washington.