Demps, who was an Olympic sprinter before signing on with the Patriots ahead of the 2012 season, is planning to return to Track and Field, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. Demps’ return to the track doesn’t mean an end to his football days, though, as the speedy tailback does want to continue his career on the gridiron, too.
Demps competed as a member of the USA track and field team in the 2012 London Olympics, running as a member of the Men’s 4×100 meter relay team and winning a silver medal. He then signed a three-year deal with the Patriots in August to pursue his NFL dreams as well. He played in just two preseason games for the Patriots before being placed on injured reserve at the end of training camp.
The Patriots expected to use Demps primarily as a return specialist with a limited role on offense, but now that role is very much in question. Demps was very productive as both a running back and returner during his four seasons at Florida and his blazing speed was expected to transfer over to the pros quite well.
There is still a chance that Demps will remain with the Patriots and continue on with his NFL career, but nothing can be certain. Bill Belichick wants his players’ main focus to be on football, and he could see Demps’ alternative interest as a detriment. Then again, if he turns out to be the electric returner anticipated with his signing, the Patriots may be willing to make some concessions.
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