Ohio State head coach Ryan Day talks to reporters during an NCAA college football news conference at the Big Ten Conference media days, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Friday, July 23, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

The Return of a Germ: Former Ohio State football signs deal to play with Jim Harbaugh

J.K. Dobbins, a former Ohio State football player, has committed to play for Jim Harbaugh’s new team, the Los Angeles Chargers, for a single season.

One of the greatest running backs in Ohio State history, J.K. Dobbins, was a former football player for the state.

In his last year before entering the NFL, he amassed over 2000 yards of rushing experience. The Baltimore Ravens selected him in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

So far, that has been the high point of his NFL career. Regrettably, he has incurred numerous injuries.

He ran for 805 yards and nine touchdowns in his impressive rookie season, but he hasn’t nearly reached those stats since. He tore his Achilles tendon and blew out both of his knees.

To put it plainly, Dobbins has never maintained his health. There’s still plenty of tread on his tires, and he’s only 25. All he needs is an opportunity to play.

Dobbins must also demonstrate that he can maintain his health. He’s getting another chance to show it to one team.

On Wednesday, Dobbins agreed to a one-year contract to play under Jim Harbaugh with the Los Angeles Chargers.

Watching the former Ohio State football player play for the former Michigan coach will be an unusual combination. But in the league, this is his last opportunity.


Dobbins could not receive another opportunity in the NFL if he sustains another season-ending injury. He may end up on the damaged goods list.

That would be a title he has merited. He was among the most gifted running backs I have ever seen come through Columbus, so it stinks.

If Dobbins could get his career back on track in Los Angeles, that would be one amazing comeback tale.

Now that Austin Ekler is gone, he will compete with Gus Edwards, a former teammate of the Ravens, for the starting running back position. If he could win and perform well, that would be awesome.

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