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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Blount prepared financially for lockout



A lockout would obviously affect all NFL players, but an undrafted free agent such as Bucs running back LeGarrette Blount may be the least prepared for it.

For starters, Blount has only played one season, earning the NFL minimum of $320,000 as a rookie in 2010. He is set to earn $405,000 this season and looking forward to bigger pay days after leading all rookies with 1,007 rushing yards.

The NFL Player's Association told its members to save at least three paychecks during the season in anticipation of a work stoppage.

Appearing on ESPN's First Take Wednesday, Blount made it clear he is prepared financially for the lockout.

"It'll affect guys like me, it will affect us a lot, just the simple fact that we're (undrafted) free agents,'' Blount said. "But my mom and my sister, everybody is looking out for me, doing everything they can do to make me save most of my money. I'm definitely not going to be one of the the guys going around asking for loans, trying to get money from my other teammates and things like that. I want to definitely be one of those guys who saved up their money and whatever happens, happens. I'm going to definitely try to be prepared when this lockout happens. I just hope it doesn't last long.''

That's good news. Bucs center Jeff Faine, the team's union representative, has said he worries about young players like Blount.

"There are real costs,'' Faine said. "Think about the undrafted free agent rookie who didn’t really buy into the belief that there might be a lockout. And he had a good year this year. I'll use an example, I'm not saying he did it, but let's say it's LeGarrette Blount who says, 'We're not going to get locked out. I'm good. I'm going to spend this money because I'll make it next year.' These guys could end up eating Saltines and anchovies.

"This is a very proud league. Nobody is going to tell me that's the situation, but I'm sure it exists. . .We’re fighting for Josh Freeman and LeGarrette Blount and the freshman sitting in high school right now and players down the line.''

[Last modified: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 6:28pm]


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