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  • Writer's pictureJoe Pace

New England Sports 366, #16: Sam Gash

I feel like writing about a fullback today. I was one myself, back in the day, a block-first, fourth-and-one pop-6 kind of guy. So I was primed to appreciate the efforts of mid-1990s Patriots stalwart Sam Gash. Drafted in the eighth round in 1992 (back when there were eight rounds), Gash roamed the offensive backfield for New England from 1992-1997. He protected Drew Bledsoe and opened holes for Curtis Martin en route to Super Bowl XXXI. We loved him for his no-nonsense, tough-as-nails, battering ram style. Dude was fierce. He ran it now and again, and even became a fairly deft receiver out of the backfield, but his first and highest purpose was to lead block or pass protect. It's what fullbacks do.

Gash went on to be named All-Pro twice with the Bills (in 1999 he became the first running back ever selected to the Pro Bowl without ever carrying the ball in the regular season). He'd also win a Super Bowl ring with the Ravens in 2001 and later he became a running backs coach in the league. But I like to remember number 33 (before it was Kevin Faulk) crashing into would-be tacklers and grading the road. It's what fullbacks do, baby. And this guy was one of my favorites.

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