Most fans know James Develin as New England Patriots’ lead blocker and hard-nosed bulldozer. A tough and dependable football player, Develin serves an extra toughness in the league. The NFL star has had an indirect and rough route to success in nearly a decade fully focused on football. Though a mechanical engineer by training, Develin chose to follow his first dream – football, a decision that has since paid off. Here are lesser known facts about the Pats’ bulldozing fullback.
Who Is James Develin?
James Rittenhouse Develin, Jr. the son of Jim and Donna Develin was born on the 23rd of July, 1988 in Pennsylvania. James began exhibiting enviable athletic abilities from his childhood especially during his days at Boyertown Area Senior High School. As the captain of the school’s football team, Develin left impressive records. Interestingly, his extra-curricular activities were not detrimental to his academics as he excelled and was recognized in both fields.
James continued with his stellar football performances in college at Brown University where he bagged a degree in Mechanical Engineering. While in college, Develin was a defensive lineman. But his hopes of being drafted into the league were dashed when no team showed interest in signing him up because they thought he wasn’t good enough. Consequently, James went in search of engineering jobs believing his fate was not in football. But after a while, he decided to try the sport once more.
5 Facts About The NFL Fullback
1. Rocky Path To Fame
James Develin’s pro career began with the AFL. His first tryout was with the Oklahoma City Yard Dawgz and then the UFL’s Florida Tuskers. In the year 2010, he was signed by the Cincinnati squad before finally landing a deal with the New England Patriots in 2012. He has since been a valuable asset in New England’s active roster. Develin who continues to smash holes through defensive lines has so far enjoyed three Super Bowl wins with the Patriots.
2. Blue Collar Type of Player
Develin is quite an unusual player in the league not just because he plays a position that is non-existent on many teams, but also because he delivers efficiently and effectively on his job. As was the tradition in the league in the past years, many teams no longer have the need for fullbacks. But teams like the Patriots who appreciate spread-out and faster offenses than regular two-back sets manning the backfield apparently value pivotal assets like Develin.
Arguably one of the best fullbacks in the league, James is a very selfless but underestimated player. With so much to offer including his toughness and attitude, Develin has been a consistent player, taking advantage of his opportunities and making the most of them.
Develin who considers himself as the “bodyguard” for the running backs, has been a blocker and protector for his teammates. Delivering with so much enthusiasm, he is happy doing his job and has definitely legitimized the use of a fullback in the league.
3. He is a Doting Husband and Father
James Develin’s better half is Jennifer Waddington. While the beginning of their love journey is not exactly known, it is obvious that the couple has been longtime lovers and Jennifer has been more than a significant other to the NFL star.
James and Jennifer Develin tied the knot on July 6, 2013. They have since expanded their family to a total of 5, including two sons (James III and William Robert) and a daughter – Adrienne Mattea. A doting husband and dad, Develin is known to regularly incorporate family moments on the field. Even while reveling in precious championship moments, the NFL star sure doesn’t halt normal family routines on the field after a game.
More than just being another celebrity spouse, Jennifer has done well for herself and also earns a modest paycheck. She is a Temple University graduate who majored in communications, theatre, public relations, and Marketing. She has worked with a few management and marketing firms and currently works with the Market Connect Group (MCG).
4. Height – How Tall Is He?
James Develin is a 6-foot-3, 255-pound bruiser whose impressive build was once not just enough for NFL drafters. Many teams considered him too small to play on the defensive end and also quite slow to play as a linebacker. So alternatively, Develin who enjoyed contact identified his strengths and switched over to the offensive side and became a full/back tight end. The NFL fullback’s physique has obviously been an advantage for him.
5. Salary and Earnings
Following his decade long journey in the sport, Develin has grown to become not just a pivotal Patriots’ team member but also an expensive player in the league. It, therefore, came as no surprise when his contract with the Patriots was renewed and extended in the summer of 2018. The new 2-year $3.8 million deal will have Develin smiling to the bank with an average annual salary of $1.9 million, a significant increase from his former paycheck with the NFL side. James might not be one of the highest paid players in the league but he’s sure to have a very satisfying journey at the end of his lucrative career.