Aug 30, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Jets running backs coach Anthony Lynn along the sidelines during the fourth quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles defeated the Jets 28-10. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports
There has been a lot of scrutiny given to running back coach Anthony Lynn’s group of players. We know about all we need to know about Shonn Greene. Yes, he worked his way to a second season of over 1,000 yards rushing, but it was not at all flashy. He does not break off long runs anymore, like he did in 2009 in the playoffs against the Chargers. He doesn’t make people miss, he just isn’t that type of back. His elusive rating was 11.7, nowhere near where we want it to be for a West Coast offensive system.
Bilal Powell came into his own a bit as the season went along. He appeared to all of our eyes as bring faster than Shonn Greene, and put in an elusive rating of 22.6. Neither of these two guys are great receivers out of the backfield. Well, at least Shonn isn’t, we need to see much more from Bilal to make that determination.
So, do the Jets have to completely go outside the organization to improve this running game? The answer is they do not. They have a player on this roster that is a fan favorite, and is adept at making people miss in space. How adept? Even though he was only on offense for 30 snaps, he had an elusive rating of 90.3, which was right behind CJ Spiller with a 94.6. Who am I talking about? You probably already know, but here he is:
Dec 30, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets running back Joe McKnight (25) during the game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Jets 28-9. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports
Joe McKnight, that’s who. Haven’t we all been asking for this guy to get more playing time, for a long time? Well, now would be the time for that. Get this man in space, he can execute the West Coast offense, as he averaged almost 5 yards per carry after contact. He would be perfect, give him a chance.