TUSCALOOSA, Alabama – Le’Ron McClain went to work right after he was cut by the San Diego Chargers in March.
The former Alabama fullback returned to Northport, where he resides during the offseason, and promptly hit the gym. Outside of Saturday morning, when he hosted his annual free youth football camp at American Christian Academy, McClain hasn’t spent much time away from training and “grinding” as he hopes to extend his NFL career into 2014.
“I’m a free agent right now and just got to wait on that call,” McClain said. “Right now, I’m expecting a call before training camp. Only thing I can do is be prepared when they call. That’s the only thing I can do right now.”
NFL training camps typically open in mid- to late July. McClain, a seven-year veteran and two-time All-Pro who was due $2.5 million in 2014, played just 154 snaps last season as the Chargers, like many other NFL teams, used a traditional fullback less and less in their offensive attack.
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McClain, who has worked out regularly at JDPI Sports Performance in Northport, said he’s lost 15 pounds since he was released and is currently at a “great weight.” His goal has been to “get as fast as I can.”
“I’m trying to evolve my game also and do more than just blocking and everything,” McClain said. “Just trying to evolve my game as in catching, running routes, just trying to be a difference-maker on the field. That’s what I’ve been working on this offseason.
“Whatever team calls me, they’re going to get that different type of player this year.”
McClain took on running back responsibilities in 2008 with the Baltimore Ravens when he ran for 902 yards and 10 touchdowns. Over the past three seasons — one in Kansas City and two in San Diego — McClain was used primarily as a blocker and attempted just 40 runs.
McClain’s attitude was upbeat as he looked ahead to 2014.
“It’s just a blessing to be in this position going into my eighth year,” he said. “They’re still talking about the fullback.”