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Former XFL running back Justin Stockton added to Pirates backfield

October 19, 2020 - Indoor Football League (IFL) - Massachusetts Pirates News Release

WORCESTER, MA. - The Massachusetts Pirates have signed their first running back as they gear up for a new league in the IFL. Justin Stockton (5'10", 200 lbs.) has been added to the 2021 roster.

Stockton is very grateful for this next step in his professional football career. "My first feelings are I cannot thank God enough for this opportunity to be able to play football again. I love everything about the culture of football and for the Pirates to believe in me is very special."

Stockton has garnered a handful of professional football experience in the past three years. He last played for the New York Guardians of the XFL this past Spring. He appeared in one game and tallied 5 rushes for 41 yards and had 1 reception for 8 yards. Before that, in 2019, Stockton played in all eight games for the Arizona Hotshots of the AAF, where he carried the ball 43 times and gathered 233 rushing yards for 1 touchdown.

Also in 2019, Stockton spent time with the Detroit Lions in their preseason. This came after he ended the 2018 regular season on the Lions practice squad. He also spent time with the Seattle Seahawks during their preseason in 2018.

Pirates President and General Manager Jawad Yatim is excited to see Stockton in a variety of different roles with the team. "Justin was referred to me by a good friend of mine, and I feel like he's someone that can come in and be a difference maker for us immediately," Yatim told "He can be used in the backfield, split out wide, and in the return game. He's a dynamic athlete and what stuck out to me most on film was his ability as a receiver. With the limited number of players we can dress on gameday, that kind of versatility is huge especially when you get to the end of the year and guys are banged up and you're looking for different ways to maneuver through the season with different lineups it certainly helps. We are glad to have Justin on board, he's a great addition to our organization."

Stockton played college football at Texas Tech University for four years (2014-17). As a senior, he led his team in rushing with 797 yards on the ground. He also recorded 235 receiving yards and 5 total touchdowns. He rushed for 103 yards in his final college game (Birmingham Bowl versus USF). As a junior, he was named a preseason candidate for the Doak Walker Award (nation's top running back). Stockton was voted All-Big 12 honorable mention by conference coaches as both a sophomore and senior and finished his Red Raider career with 2,586 yards from scrimmage and 24 total touchdowns. He is a native of Cibolo, Texas.

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