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Peyton Barber Says He Left Auburn for NFL Draft Because His Mother Is Homeless

Auburn running back Peyton Barber speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press
Alec NathanFeatured Columnist IVDecember 25, 2016

Former Auburn running back Peyton Barber surprised some prognosticators when he declared for the NFL draft following his redshirt sophomore season, but it turns out he had a good reason for doing so.  

Speaking to reporters Wednesday at the NFL combine in Indianapolis, Barber said he cut his time with the Tigers short to pursue a career in the NFL because his mother is currently homeless, according to NFL.com's Chase Goodbread

"My mother is homeless right now," Barber said, per Goodbread. "Right now she's staying with her sister. It's her and her three kids staying in an apartment back home."

You can view the complete video of Barber's remarks below, courtesy of NFL.com: 

"This isn't her first (struggle). It's nothing new," Barber said, per Goodbread. "It's just a little bump in the road for us. We'll overcome it."

After totaling 1,016 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns during the 2015 season, it's safe to say Barber is on track to help his mother overcome adversity.  

"Is Peyton an Adrian Peterson? No," his father Ken Barber said, per the Ledger-Enquirer's Michael Niziolek. "Is he a first-rounder? No. Second-rounder? No, but there are teams looking for an all-around back with his size and character."

While Barber may not hear his name called on the first or even the second day of the 2016 draft, he clearly has the skills to catch the eye of teams seeking backfield depth.

And although Barber was only able to flash his skills in 18 games over two seasons at Auburn, the fact that his legs haven't racked up a ton of mileage should be a net positive for the youngster's stock as the draft process continues. 

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