Can Alvin Kamara Break NFL Veteran Running Back Curse In 2023?

Can Alvin Kamara Break NFL Veteran Running Back Curse In 2023?
Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

Few NFL running backs have been as consistent for as long as New Orleans Saints seventh-year stalwart Alvin Kamara. He's been a centerpiece of many Louisiana sports betting wagers for NFL fans.

Kamara eclipsed 5,000 career rushing yards in 2022, finishing the year with 897 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns to raise his career numbers to 5,135 yards and 49 scores through 88 games played.  

Given the news of Josh Jacobs, Saquon Barkley and Tony Pollard not being offered long-term contracts, it has been a discussion around the NFL if running backs are not being paid enough for the amount of value they bring to the NFL.  

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Statistics of Older RBs In Past 5 NFL Seasons

LouisianaBets.com utilized ProFootballReference.com to determine whether giving contracts to running backs into their late 20s and beyond is worth it. We shifted through the RB stats for yards per game & touchdowns to find the Top 25 RBs from the 2018 season until the 2022 season. We utilized 28 years or older for the research project. 

YearNumber of 28+ RBs in Top 25 Rushing Yards Per GameNumber of 28+ RBs in Top 25 Rushing TDs Per Game
20181 of 25 (4%)3 of 25 (12%)
20193 of 25 (12%)3 of 25 (12%)
20202 of 25 (8%)3 of 25 (12%)
20211 of 25 (4%)3 of 25 (12%)
20224 of 25 (16%)3 of 25 (12%)
TOTAL11 of 125 (8.8%)15 of 125 (12%)

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Can Kamara Keep Up With the Joneses In 2023?

The 2022 season was a bewildering one for Saints fans, as Kamara finished last season with a career low in rushing touchdowns and the lowest yards over a single season since 2019 (when he had 797 yards on the ground).  

Those fans may be starting to wonder whether Kamara still has his A-game out of the backfield, after handling 1,135 carries and hauling in 430 catches during his first six years with the club.  

A silver lining for fans of Kamara and the Saints was the former Tennessee Volunteer finished last year with his highest year-end receiving stats since 2019, with 57 catches for 490 yards and a pair of touchdowns during the season.  

If Kamara can continue to make an impact both on the ground and through the air, the New Orleans’ offense could continue to shine this fall, with Kamara pushing off the veteran running back blues for another year.  The Saints playoff chances lean heavily on Kamara's production.

For now, it’s worth wondering whether Kamara is entering the downside of his career arc, or if the seventh-year back has simply retooled his game to gel with today’s NFL offensive flow.  

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Author

Christopher Boan writes for LouisianaBets.com and has been covering sports and sports betting for more than seven years, with experience at ArizonaSports.com, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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