Veteran running back Frank Gore eyes a new sport: boxing

Frank Gore is one of the greatest running backs of all time, and at age 38 he knows he can still play. Yet when teams have called him this year to inquire about filling some of their running back voids, he has politely declined.

Instead, the NFL's third-leading rusher of all-time has focused his eyes on a new sport: boxing.

"I've been training for both -- football and boxing," Gore told NFL.com. "I've always loved boxing, so that's what I've been doing. And we're trying to make a fight happen. If we do that, you'll see me in the ring."

Gore has spent the last few months actively training to get into the ring, and a source confirms that there is a high-profile fight in the works for Gore. Always a fight fan, Gore also hired noted fight agent Malki Kawa, who is also a football agent and negotiated Darius Leonard's $99.25 million extension.

With backfield vacancies such as the Jaguars following the injury to Travis Etienne and Ravens following injuries to J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards, there are plenty of RB openings. Gore has received calls, though he declined to say which teams called. He added that he hasn't really made up his mind on if he wants to play.

Clearly, though, his focus is on the ring. He's always sparred to stay in shape. But for the last five weeks or so, it's been full-tilt boxing and fight training.

"I just fell in love with how hard it is," Gore said. "I felt like, 'Man, I couldn't fight.' And I always like a challenge. So I kept doing it and doing it and I saw myself getting better and better."

The longtime 49ers star has taken an AFC East tour recently, playing for the Dolphins, Bills, and Jets. Last year with New York, he carried 187 times for 653 yards with two scores -- starting 14 times. While he still has juice left, the current focus is on boxing.

"You'll see when I get in the ring," Gore said.

Follow Ian Rapoport on Twitter.

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