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Corey Dillon put together an impressive NFL career with two teams, the Cincinnati Bengals and New England Patriots. However, the former running back had the most success playing with the latter. Dillon won a Super Bowl with the Patriots and was named to the Patriots’ all-dynasty team in 2020. So where is the four-time Pro Bowler now?

Corey Dillon excelled in college before entering the NFL

Dillon started his college career at the junior college level. During his freshman year, he attended Garden City Community College in Kansas. He rushed for 1,165 yards and 16 touchdowns in 1994. Dillon transferred schools the next year and attended Dixie State College in Utah.

The talented running back continued to succeed, rushing for 1,899 yards and 20 touchdowns. He was even named the JC Offensive Back of the Year by College Sports magazine. After an impressive junior college career, he attended the University of Washington.

At Washington, Dillon put together an impressive career there. He set the all-time single-season records for rushing yards (1,695 yards) and touchdowns (24) in 1996. In a game against San Jose State, Dillon rushed for 222 yards and caught an 83-yard touchdown pass. He set NCAA records for both rushing yards and all-purpose yards (305) in one quarter.

Against UCLA, the Washington Huskies player had a breakout performance. He scored five touchdowns and earned Sports Illustrated National Player of the Week honors.

During the 1996 Holiday Bowl against Colorado, Dillon was the star. He rushed for 140 yards and scored two touchdowns. After his collegiate career, the Cincinnati Bengals selected Dillon in the second round of the 1997 NFL Draft.

Dillon was a star in Cincinnati

Before playing for the Patriots, Dillon spent his first seven seasons with the Bengals. He became one of the Bengals’ top players on offense as a rookie.

Dillon rushed for 246 yards and four touchdowns in a 41–14 win over the Tennessee Oilers, breaking Jim Brown’s rookie single-game record that stood for 40 years. His performance is still a Bengals record for carries, yards, touchdowns, and a franchise record for touchdowns. The Seattle native finished his rookie season rushing for 1,129 yards and 10 touchdowns. His 1,129 yards is still a Bengals rookie record.

Dillon wasted no time making an impact on a struggling Bengals team. During his time in Cincinnati, he was selected to three consecutive Pro Bowls (1999-2001). From 1997 to 2002, he rushed for over 1,000 yards.

During the 2000 season, Dillon had a record-setting performance against the Denver Broncos. He set an NFL record for most yards rushed in one game as he had 278 yards. That broke Walter Payton’s single-game performance of 275 yards in 1997.

That record was broken twice by Jamal Lewis and Adrian Peterson. Though Dillon succeeded in Cincinnati, he was ready to leave the team due to their struggles. 

Dillon continued to dominate playing with the Patriots

In 2004, the Bengals traded Dillon to the Patriots for a second-round draft pick. In his first season in New England, Dillon set a career-high in rushing attempts (345) and rushing yards (1,635). He was a part of the Patriots team that won their third Super Bowl against the Philadelphia Eagles. Dillon rushed for 75 yards and a touchdown and finished the game with 106 total yards. 

In his three seasons with the Patriots, Dillon scored the most touchdowns in his career. During the 2004 and 2005 seasons, he had 12 rushing touchdowns. In his final season, he had a career-high 13 rushing touchdowns. Dillon finished his career rushing for 11,241 yards and 82 touchdowns. He currently ranks 20th on the all-time rushing list. 

Where is Corey Dillon now?

In 2007, the Patriots released Dillon, who subsequently announced his retirement. Although he waffled on hanging up his cleats when one of the Patriots’ running backs got injured, Dillon remained retired.

In addition to Dillon’s more recent inclusion on the Patriots’ all-dynasty team, he was inducted into Utah Tech‘s Hall of Fame in 2008.

The former athlete remained out of the spotlight until April 2010, when his wife filed for divorce after 10 years of marriage. Dillon was arrested for a DUI a few weeks later. Then, he was arrested on suspicion of assault during an argument with his wife at their Southern California home, reports TMZ.

Since Dillon’s tumultuous 2010, he’s preferred to remain out of the spotlight, dabbling in neither broadcasting nor social media as many retired athletes do. “My thing is staying off the grid,” Dillon told the In The Trenches podcast. “I just like living a normal life. There isn’t anything too special about what I’ve been doing. I’m doing father stuff and just being me. I like my peace and quiet.”

According to Dillon, his oldest daughter graduated from USC in 2022. She competed in rowing and volleyball with both the Trojans and the Washington Huskies during her college career. Dillon’s two younger daughters attend Sierra Canyon School, where Zaire Wade and Bronny James attended.

“The thing about it is they’re super smart, and I don’t care about them being athletic,” Dillon says about his daughters. “I care about them being book smart, and they are.”

Stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference.


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