Bills RB Frank Gore never contemplated retirement

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Conspiracy theory: Frank Gore found the Fountain of Youth and is hoarding it for his own use.

Don't believe it?

You try to find a better reason why Gore doesn't age. Figure out how a 36-year-old running back can continue to perform at the most physically punishing position in football, one that grinds players out like they are an eraser on the back of a No. 2 pencil. Explain how he consistently does his bruising job 15 years into an NFL career after entering the league with many questioning whether he could ever perform after two ACL tears in college.

Fountain. Of. Youth.

That's my best explanation.

For Gore, the workaholic who keeps himself in prime shape at 36 -- an age when the body begins to physically abhor punishing workouts -- his love of the game keeps him motivated to continue his career.

"I feel good, man," Gore said, via the Buffalo News. "...I'm blessed to be playing a game that I still love at the age that a lot of people say you can't play it. I'm doing something I love. I'm enjoying it."

Gore is enjoying what should be a Hall of Fame career. He sits at 14,748 career rushing yards, fourth all-time, behind only Emmitt Smith, Walter Payton and Barry Sanders. He should become just the fourth player to earn 15,000 yards. With 521 yards he'd move past Sanders into third place all-time. Gore has never had fewer than 600 yards in a season. His career-low is 608 his rookie campaign back in 2005 -- during George W. Bush's presidency.

Last season, Gore started 14 games before injury cut off his streak of starting every game for six straight seasons.

This year, he's slated to be in a crowded Bills backfield with presumptive starter LeSean McCoy, impressive rookie Devin Singletary and pass-catching pack T.J. Yeldon.

Gore said he's not worried about competing for snaps.

"As long as I'm healthy and feeling good, I will compete with anybody. So I'm not tripping on that," he said.

Neither is he tripping about retirement.

"Nah, no, I'm not thinking about it right now," he said. "I'm just going out there every day, trying to compete and try to win a job. If I feel like I can't go out there this year, I'll say, 'Forget it.' If I still think I can go and feel good and [I'm] still enjoying it, I'll go. But right now, I'll just take it one day at a time and see where it goes."

Coach Sean McDermott marveled at what Gore can accomplish at his age but wouldn't put a prediction on how much work the ageless wonder could get in 2019.

"I don't want to put a number (on what he expects from Gore this season), but I think at the end of the day, if we needed him to be the lead back for games or whatever, he could do it," McDermott said. "I have no doubt. He wants the ball. This guy's competitive. He wants it on first down, second down. We did a pass-pro drill (Tuesday), he's sticking his face right in there. He's going to be ready if we want him 10 times a game, 20 times a game, whatever. If we needed him to be a workhorse back for us, I think he could still do it."

Could still do it. Can still do it. Probably will still do it at some point this season.

Frank Gore will never age.

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