Leonard Fournette
No. 27     
Running back
Personal information
Date of birth: (1995-01-18) January 18, 1995 (age 25)
Place of birth: New Orleans, Louisiana
Career information
College: LSU
NFL Draft: 2017 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4
No regular season or postseason appearances
Career history
* Jacksonville Jaguars ( 2017–present)
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
* Consensus All-American (2015)
Career NFL statistics as of 2018
Rushing yards     1,479
Rushing average     3.7
Rushing touchdowns     14
Receptions     58
Receiving yards     487
Receiving touchdowns     2

Leonard Joseph Fournette III (born January 18, 1995) is an American football running back for the Jacksonville Jaguars of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at LSU, and was drafted by the Jaguars with the fourth overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. Fournette was a consensus All-America selection following his sophomore season in 2015, after setting school single-season records with 1,953 rushing yards and 22 rushing touchdowns, and leading the country with 162.8 rushing yards per game. Various experts regarded him as the best player in college football, comparing him to all-time great Herschel Walker.[1][2]

Fournette joined the Tigers with near-unprecedented hype in 2014 after an outstanding career at St. Augustine High School in New Orleans, winning the 2013 USA Today High School Football Offensive Player of the Year and being named the No. 1 overall recruit in 2014 senior class according to ESPN,, and CBS Sports.[3] Fournette's brother, Lanard, is a running back at LSU.

Early yearsEdit

Raised in the 7th Ward of New Orleans, Fournette grew up in a troubled area that was often affected by violence and gang activity, especially after Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005. Fournette credited Katrina as kick-starting his football career after he moved to Houston and back within a year because of the hurricane evacuation. When he came back to New Orleans he played football at St. Augustine High School, where he not only competed in football but also track and field.[4] His 200 metres regional mark of 21.57 seconds is fastest in 4A, and his 10.68 in the 100 metres is only .02 off the best time. He also competed in the 4 × 100 metres relay and 4 × 200 metres relay. On the varsity football team, he was a starter since his freshman year and compiled 7,619 rushing yards and 88 rushing touchdowns for his career.[5] He rushed for more than 2,500 yards and 30 touchdowns his freshman season, and became the first-ever freshman to earn a scholarship offer from Louisiana State.[6] His sophomore year ended with 1,900 yards rushing and 27 touchdowns. As a junior, he registered 2,135 rushing yards and 31 touchdowns and was an LFCA Class 4A First-Team All-State honoree. In his senior year, Fournette ran for 1,792 yards and 16 touchdowns and added 45 receptions for 745 yards and six scores. Early in the season, he had a heralded performance with two touchdowns and 262 yards rushing against Malachi Dupre's John Curtis Christian, which was nationally televised by ESPN2.[7] St. Augustine ended the season with a 9–2 record and an appearance in the LHSAA Division I semifinal game, where they were upset 31–28 by Archbishop Rummel High School.[8] Fournette was named Louisiana's 2013 Mr. Football by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association, and also was selected as an All-American by Parade and USA Today, as well as USA Today Offensive Player of the Year, the first from Louisiana since Ryan Perrilloux in 2004. After the season, Fournette participated in the Under Armour All-America Game where he caught a 36-yard touchdown pass and rushed for 43 yards on nine carries.

Unanimously regarded as the best running back prospect of his class, Fournette was one of the most highly recruited players ever to come out of Louisiana. ESPN ranked him as the No. 1 recruit in the class of 2014,[9] as did[10] At the 2014 Under Armour All-America Game, Fournette announced his decision to attend Louisiana State University (LSU).[11]

College careerEdit

Fournette attended and played college football for LSU from 2014–2016 under head coaches Les Miles and Ed Orgeron.[12]

Freshman seasonEdit

Fournette's college career was preceded by very high expectations and hype, and he was often called "the next Adrian Peterson".[13][14] In his collegiate debut against the Wisconsin Badgers on August 30, 2014, Fournette ran for 18 yards on eight carries.[14] After the game, LSU head coach Les Miles downplayed the Fournette hype. "First games are not to be comparable to his 30th game," said Miles. "Expectations are unrealistic."[13] In his second game, against the Sam Houston State Bearkats, Fournette rushed for 92 yards on 13 attempts and scored his first collegiate rushing touchdown.[15] In the fifth week of the season, the New Mexico State Aggies traveled to Death Valley to face the #17 LSU Tigers, and Fournette ran for 122 yards on 18 carries and scored two touchdowns.[16] This effort put Fournette at the top of the Tigers' rushing list for the season.[17] On October 11 against SEC rival Florida, Fournette rushed the ball 27 times for 140 yards and two touchdowns to help LSU secure a 30–27 last-second win in The Swamp.[18] Against undefeated and #3 Ole Miss, who led the nation in stopping the run, Fournette shook off an early goal line fumble and rushed 23 times for 113 yards to go along with two receptions for 41 yards.[19] LSU ran the ball 12 times for 92 yards on a 13-play, 95-yard touchdown drive to upset the Rebels by a score of 10–7 in Death Valley.[20] Fournette finished the season against Notre Dame in the 2014 Music City Bowl with 11 carries for 143 yards and two touchdowns. In addition, he had a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the loss to the Fighting Irish.[21][22]

Sophomore seasonEdit

Fournette started his sophomore season with a strong performance of 159 rushing yards and three touchdowns against Mississippi State.[23] In the next game, a victory over Auburn, he finished with 228 rushing yards and three touchdowns.[24] He rushed for a career-high 244 yards and two touchdowns against Syracuse in the Carrier Dome, six yards shy of tying Alley Broussard's school record of 250 yards against Ole Miss in 2004.[25] Fournette had an 87-yard touchdown run nullified by an illegal formation call late in the game.[26] The following week, against Eastern Michigan, Fournette rushed for 233 yards, becoming the first player in Southeastern Conference (SEC) history to rush for 200 or more yards in three straight games.[27] Against Western Kentucky, Fournette ran for 150 yards, his ninth consecutive 100+ yards rushing game, a streak that dated back to the Texas A&M game in late November 2014.[28] He tied a school record originally established by Charles Alexander in 1978.[29] Fournette's streak ended the next game against rival Alabama, the nation's best rushing defense, at Bryant–Denny Stadium. He was held to 31 yards on 19 attempts, as the Crimson Tide handed LSU its first loss of the season.[30] In the 2015 Texas Bowl, Fournette ran for 212 yards and scored five total touchdowns as the Tigers defeated Texas Tech, 56–27.[31]

In his sophomore season, Fournette set school records with 1,953 rushing yards and 22 rushing touchdowns. With an average of 162.8 rushing yards per game, he won the NCAA rushing title, awarded to the player with the highest rushing yards per game average each season.[32] He finished sixth in Heisman Trophy voting, earning 110 points. He earned consensus All-America honors as he was named to the first team by three official selectors: the Associated Press (AP),[33] the Walter Camp Football Foundation,[34] and the Football Writers Association of America.[35] SEC coaches,[36] the Associated Press,[37] and[38] each named Fournette to their All-SEC first team.

Junior seasonEdit

Entering his junior season, Fournette was expected to contend for the Heisman Trophy, and was one of the preseason favorites to win the award.[39][40] During a scrimmage game prior to the 2016 season, Fournette sustained a high ankle sprain,[41][42] but was well enough to return for the season opener against Wisconsin at Lambeau Field.[43] Late in the game against Wisconsin, he bruised the same ankle and missed the next week's game against Jacksonville State as a result. He re-injured it against SEC West rival Auburn on September 24 in a 101-yard rushing effort, causing him to miss the next two games.[44] On October 22, his first game back, Fournette rushed for 284 yards and three touchdowns against Ole Miss to set a new single-game school record for rushing yards.[45] His school record was surpassed later in the season by Derrius Guice by one yard. With his ankle still not fully healed, Fournette was not expected to play against Florida on November 19, and did not suit up for pregame warm-ups. However, after a pregame scuffle between the teams in which Fournette shoved a Florida assistant coach,[46] LSU head coach Ed Orgeron granted him permission to play. Still visibly bothered by the injury, he managed only 40 yards on 12 carries and did not play in the fourth quarter.[47] Due to the injury, he did not travel with the team to College Station to face Texas A&M in the final game of the regular season.[48] He finished his junior season having carried 129 times for 843 yards and eight touchdowns in seven games.[49]

On December 5, 2016, Fournette announced his intention to enter the 2017 NFL Draft.[50] To avoid injury, his coach told him to skip the 2016 Citrus Bowl, which LSU won over Louisville.[51] Fournette finished his college career having rushed for 3,830 yards, the fourth-most by a player in LSU history behind Charles Alexander, Dalton Hilliard, and Kevin Faulk. His 40 rushing touchdowns are tied for third most in school history with Alexander and behind Hilliard and Faulk.[52]

College statisticsEdit

Leonard Fournette Rushing Receiving
Year Team GP GS Att Yards Avg Long TDs Rec Yards TDs
2014 LSU 13 6 187 1,034 5.5 89 10 7 127 0
2015 LSU 11 11 271 1,953 6.4 87 22 18 209 1
2016 LSU 7 7 129 843 6.5 78 8 15 146 0
College Totals 31 24 616 3,830 6.2 89 40 40 482 1


Professional careerEdit

Coming out of college, Fournette was highly touted as a top ten pick in the upcoming draft and was ranked as the third best prospect going into the NFL Combine. He arrived at the NFL combine weighing in at five pounds heavier than his playing weight in college and opted to only participate in the vertical and 40-yard dash. At LSU's Pro Day, he opted to only partake in positional drills. He was ranked the top overall running back prospect by, but was ranked the second best running back behind Florida State's Dalvin Cook by Pro Football Focus and Sports Illustrated.[54][55][56]

30px External video
16px Fournette's NFL Combine workout
16px Leonard Fournette's 40-yard dash
16px Fournette's Pro Day highlights
Pre-draft measureables
Ht WtArm lengthHand size 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP
6 ft 0½ in 240 lb31 58 in9 14 in 4.51 s 1.59 s 2.65 s 28½ in

The Jacksonville Jaguars selected Fournette in the first round (fourth overall) of the 2017 NFL Draft.[57] He was the first running back taken in that year's draft.[58]

30px External video
16px Jaguars select Fournette fourth overall
16px Fournette arrives at 2017 NFL Draft

On May 17, 2017, the Jacksonville Jaguars signed Fournette to a four-year, $27 million contract with a $18 million signing bonus.[59]

2017 season: Rookie yearEdit

Fournette played his first regular season game on September 10, 2017, against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. He rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries as the Jaguars won 29–7.[60][61] In Week 4, against the New York Jets, Fournette recorded a 10-yard reception in the first quarter for his first career receiving touchdown.[62] In Week 5 against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Fournette posted an impressive performance with 181 rushing yards, including a Jaguars franchise-record 90-yard run in the fourth quarter, and two touchdowns as the Jaguars won 30–9.[63] In Week 6 against the Los Angeles Rams, Fournette carried 21 times for 130 yards, including a 75-yard touchdown run on the Jaguars' first play from scrimmage. He left the game in the fourth quarter with a minor ankle injury as the Jaguars lost to the Rams, 17–27.[64] Because of the ankle injury, he was ruled out for Week 7. Following a bye week, more trouble arose as Fournette was declared inactive for Week 9 against the Cincinnati Bengals as he violated team rules.[65] In 13 games and starts, Fournette finished his rookie year with 1,040 rushing yards, 302 receiving yards, and 10 total touchdowns.[66] He was ranked 58th by his peers on the NFL Top 100 Players of 2018.[67]

The Jaguars finished the 2017 season with a 10–6 record, clinching the AFC South.[68] In the Wild Card Round against the Buffalo Bills, Fournette struggled, rushing for 57 yards on 21 carries as the Jaguars won 10–3.[69] In the Divisional Round against the Pittsburgh Steelers, he briefly left the game with an ankle injury, but returned and finished with 109 yards and three touchdowns as the Jaguars won 45–42.[70] The following week, in the AFC Championship against the New England Patriots, Fournette ran for 76 yards and a touchdown, but the Jaguars lost 24–20.[71]

2018 seasonEdit

Fournette injured his hamstring during the 2018 regular season opener against the New York Giants.[72] He missed the next two games before returning against the New York Jets, where he aggravated the injury and was ruled out indefinitely.[73] After missing four more games, he returned against the division rival Indianapolis Colts, rushing for 53 yards and a touchdown with 56 receiving yards and a receiving touchdown as the Jaguars lost 29–26.[74] Against the Buffalo Bills, Fournette had his best game of the season, rushing for 95 yards and two touchdowns. However, after a Donte Moncrief reception that was initially ruled a touchdown in the third quarter, Fournette got into a fistfight with Bills defender Shaq Lawson as part of a brawl that broke out between the Jaguars and Bills, and the two were subsequently ejected from the game. Without Fournette, the Jaguars lost 24–21.[75] He was suspended one game the following day for the fight.[76] Overall, he finished the 2018 season with 439 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns to go along with 22 receptions for 185 receiving yards and one receiving touchdown.[77]

NFL statisticsEdit

Led the league
Bold Career high

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team Games Rushing Receiving Fumbles
GP GS Att Yds Avg Lng TD Rec Yds Avg Lng TD Fum Lost
2017 JAX 13 13 268 1,040 3.9 90T 9 36 302 8.4 28 1 2 0
2018 JAX 8 8 133 439 3.3 25 5 22 185 8.4 31 1 0 0
Career 21 21 401 1,479 3.7 90T 14 58 487 8.4 31 2 2 0


Year Team Games Rushing Receiving Fumbles
GP GS Att Yds Avg Lng TD Rec Yds Avg Lng TD Fum Lost
2017 JAX 3 3 70 242 3.5 18 4 7 44 6.3 12 0 0 0
Career 3 3 70 242 3.5 18 4 7 44 6.3 12 0 0 0

NFL recordsEdit

  • Youngest player with a rushing touchdown of at least 90 yards (22 years, 263 days)

Jaguars franchise recordsEdit

  • First player to score a scrimmage touchdown in each of his first six career games
  • First player to rush for at least 100 yards in his NFL debut
  • Longest rushing play: 90 yards

Personal lifeEdit

Fournette's younger brother, Lanard Fournette, played at LSU with him. He graduated in May 2019.[78]

See alsoEdit


  1. Roser, Jerit (September 30, 2015). "Herschel Walker: Leonard Fournette 'is better than I was'". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  2. Maisel, Ivan (October 7, 2015). "Leonard Fournette: The best kind of different". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  3. Yellin, Lyons (April 18, 2013). "ESPN names St. Augustine's Leonard Fournette nation's No. 1 recruit". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  4. Boudwin, Julie. "Leonard Fournette gives back to St. Augustine on his 22nd birthday" (in en-US).
  5. "Jaguars star Leonard Fournette forges bond with state champs" (in en). May 31, 2018.
  6. Scarborough, Alex (June 25, 2012). "2014 running back Leonard Fournette has overcome adversity to excel in life". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  7. "Fournette breaks out: Nation's top recruit Leonard Fournette puts on a show on ESPN2". October 8, 2013. Retrieved December 12, 2016. (subscription required)
  8. Derry, Jim (December 1, 2013). "Fifth-seeded Rummel shocks St. Augustine, 31–28". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  9. "2014 ESPN 300". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  10. "2014 High School Recruits Ranking". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  11. Tyson, Derek (January 3, 2014). "Leonard Fournette commits to LSU". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  12. "Leonard Fournette College Stats" (in en).
  13. 13.0 13.1 Fornelli, Tom (September 3, 2014). "Les Miles wants to temper the Fournette hype he helped create". CBS Sports. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Duncan, Jeff (August 31, 2014). "Leonard Fournette's collegiate debut is more fizzle than sizzle". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  15. "Sam Houston State at Louisiana State Box Score, September 6, 2014" (in en).
  16. "New Mexico State at Louisiana State Box Score, September 27, 2014" (in en).
  17. "Leonard Fournette 2014 Game Log". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  18. "LSU at Florida Box Score, October 11, 2014" (in en).
  19. "Ole Miss at Louisiana State Box Score, October 25, 2014" (in en).
  20. Martel, Brett (October 26, 2014). "No. 24 LSU upends No.3 Mississippi, 10–7". Associated Press. CBS Sports. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  21. Sparks, Adam (December 30, 2014). "LSU's Leonard Fournette sizzles in Music City Bowl". The Tennessean. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  22. "Music City Bowl – Notre Dame vs Louisiana State Box Score, December 30, 2014" (in en).
  23. "LSU at Mississippi State Box Score, September 12, 2015" (in en).
  24. "Auburn at Louisiana State Box Score, September 19, 2015" (in en).
  25. Moormann, Dave (November 22, 2004). "LSU's ground attack overcomes sluggish passing game". The Daily Comet. Archived from the original on September 28, 2015. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  26. "Leonard Fournette first LSU RB to run for 200 yards in consecutive games". September 26, 2015. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  27. "LSU's Leonard Fournette on an unprecedented run". October 6, 2015. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  28. "Western Kentucky at Louisiana State Box Score, October 24, 2015" (in en).
  29. Harris, Terrance (October 24, 2015). "LSU running back Leonard Fournette matches school record consecutive 100-yard rushing games". SEC Country. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  30. "Derrick Henry (210 yards, 3 TDs) rolls as Bama contains Leonard Fournette, LSU". Associated Press. November 8, 2015.
  31. Kleinpeter, Jim (December 29, 2015). "LSU, Leonard Fournette trample Texas Tech in Texas Bowl, 56–27". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  32. Kleinpeter, Jim (January 12, 2016). "Leonard Fournette wins NCAA rushing title". The Times-Picayune. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  33. Russo, Ralph D. (December 13, 2015). "Heisman Trophy Winner Henry Highlights AP All-America Team". Associated Press. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  34. Carbone, Al (December 10, 2015). "126th Walter Camp All-America Teams". Walter Camp Football Foundation. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  35. "2015 AutoNation FWAA All-America Team Unveiled". Football Writers Association of America. December 14, 2015. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  36. Kalland, Robby (December 8, 2015). "2015 Coaches' All-SEC Team: Alabama leads the way with 10 selections". CBS Sports. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  37. "2015 Associated Press All-SEC football team". December 14, 2015. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  38. Aschoff, Edward (December 9, 2015). "2015 All-SEC team: Derrick Henry, Leonard Fournette lead the way". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  39. Chiusano, Anthony (August 29, 2016). "Heisman Watch: Early favorites to take home the trophy in 2016". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  40. Ellis, Zach (December 14, 2015). "Heisman Watch: A way-too-early look at the 2016 Heisman race". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  41. Dellenger, Ross (September 20, 2016). "Details of Leonard Fournette's ankle injury? ESPN's Dr. Jerry Punch explains...". The Advocate. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  42. Patterson, Chip (August 16, 2016). "Scary scenario for LSU: Leonard Fournette in boot following ankle injury". CBS Sports. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  43. "LSU vs Wisconsin Box Score, September 3, 2016" (in en).
  44. Dellenger, Ross (October 3, 2016). "LSU Practice Report: Still no Leonard Fournette, offensive line rotation and more". The Advocate. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  45. Ching, David (October 22, 2016). "Welcome back, Leonard: Fournette smashes LSU rushing record in return". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  46. Curtis, Charles (November 19, 2016). "LSU's Leonard Fournette, Florida assistant coach part of pregame skirmish". USA Today. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  47. "Florida at Louisiana State Box Score, November 19, 2016" (in en).
  48. Dellenger, Ross (November 23, 2016). "Source: LSU's Leonard Fournette did not make trip, won't play vs. Texas A&M on Thanksgiving". The Advocate. Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  49. "Leonard Fournette 2016 Game Log" (in en).
  50. Goodbread, Chase (December 5, 2016). "Leonard Fournette intends to enter 2017 NFL Draft". Retrieved December 5, 2015.
  51. "Leonard Fournette won't play Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl". December 16, 2016. Retrieved December 16, 2016.
  52. "LSU Fighting Tigers Rushing" (in en).
  53. "Leonard Fournette College Stats". Retrieved December 12, 2016.
  54. "*Leonard Fournette, DS #1 RB, LSU".
  55. "Top 32 Prospects for the 2017 NFL Draft".
  56. Chris Burke (April 24, 2017). "2017 NFL draft rankings: Top prospects by position".
  57. Orr, Conor (April 27, 2017). "Jaguars select RB Leonard Fournette with fourth pick".
  58. "2017 NFL Draft Listing" (in en).
  59. Patra, Kevin. "Leonard Fournette signs rookie deal with Jaguars". Retrieved May 17, 2017.
  60. "Fournette, strong defense lead Jaguars over Texans 29–7". The Washington Post. Retrieved September 10, 2017.
  61. "Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans – September 10th, 2017". Retrieved September 14, 2017.
  62. "Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets – October 1st, 2017" (in en).
  63. Graves, Will (October 8, 2017). "Leonard Fournette's 181 yards, 2 touchdowns cap off Jaguars' defense-fueled 31–9 win over Steelers". The Advocate. Associated Press. Retrieved October 8, 2017.
  64. DiRocco, Michael (October 15, 2017). "Leonard Fournette sprains ankle". Retrieved October 15, 2017.
  65. Patra, Kevin. "Leonard Fournette out for Jaguars after rule violation". NFL. Retrieved November 5, 2017.
  66. "Leonard Fournette 2017 Game Log" (in en).
  67. NFL Top 100 Players of 2018: No. 58 Leonard Fournette
  68. "2017 Jacksonville Jaguars Statistics & Players" (in en).
  69. "Wild Card – Buffalo Bills at Jacksonville Jaguars – January 7th, 2018" (in en).
  70. "Divisional Round – Jacksonville Jaguars at Pittsburgh Steelers – January 14th, 2018" (in en).
  71. "AFC Championship – Jacksonville Jaguars at New England Patriots – January 21st, 2018" (in en).
  72. "Jags RB Fournette out with hamstring injury" (in en). September 9, 2018.
  73. Dubin, Jared (October 1, 2018). "Leonard Fournette out indefinitely after aggravating hamstring injury Sunday". CBS Sports. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  74. "Watch Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts [11/11/2018"]. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  75. Zucker, Joseph (November 25, 2018). "Leonard Fournette, Shaq Lawson Ejected After Brawl in Jaguars vs. Bills". Bleacher Report. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  76. "NFL suspends Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette 1 game without pay for sideline scuffle with Shaq Lawson". The Associated Press. Fox Sports Florida. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  77. "Leonard Fournette 2018 Game Log" (in en).
  78. "Lanard Fournette". Retrieved January 18, 2018.

External linksEdit

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