Dec 28, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running backJustin Forsett
(29) runs with the ball in the first quarter against the Cleveland Browns at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
In case you missed it, there has been a development with the Jets running back situation.
The Jets announced that they will not be picking up the option of running back Chris Johnson. This in and of itself was not a surprise, as Johnson had his worst season as a pro with the New York Jets in 2014, rushing for under 700 yards and clearly showing a lost step. That combined with the fact that Bilal Powell is an unrestricted free agent, and all of a sudden the Jets have a fairly large hole at the running back position.
What do the Jets do about it? There has been a lot of talk about C.J. Spiller, and his fit with Chan Gailey in town. But what if the Jets can’t get a deal done with him? Where do the Jets go next?
Here is an underrated candidate, that would also make a good fit. His name is Justin Forsett.
Next: Career Stats
Dec 28, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett (29) breaks the tackle of Cleveland Browns linebackerPaul Kruger
(99) at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
Let’s look at the career stats for Forsett:
Rushing & Receiving
When Justin Forsett gets the chance to play, Forsett gets the job done. We all saw how he performed last year as the main back when he took over for Ray Rice. 1,266 rushing yards and 5.4 yards per carry is one heck of a season for Justin Forsett.
His career yards per carry is 5.1, which actually edges out C.J. Spiller (5.0). It’s not much on its face, but when you realize that Forsett has sustained that average over seven career seasons, it becomes more impressive.
Also, I want to take a look at one other key stat, ball security. Over five years, Spiller has fumbled 17 times. Over seven years, Forsett has fumbled seven times. Forsett is the more reliable ball handler, the numbers say so.
And Forsett is still in his prime at 29 years old.
Jan 10, 2015; Foxborough, MA, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett (29) carries the ball as New England Patriots strong safetyPatrick Chung
(23) tackles in the second quarter during the 2014 AFC Divisional playoff football game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
Justin Forsett is showing no signs of slowing down. In 2014, Forsett finally got his chance to be the workhorse, starting 14 out of 16 games. He responded by posting five 100 yard games on his way to over 1,200 yards. In the divisional playoff game against the Patriots, Forsett 129 yards on 24 carries, a 5.38 yards per carry average.
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Over his career, Forsett started 21 games, posting 100 yard games in seven of them. This isn’t just a backup running back. This is a consistent running back that has gotten the job done when he has gotten the carries, no matter where he has been.
Dec 21, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett (29) rushes during the first quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
With his limited production over his career, Forsett has not cost a huge amount of money. His one year deal with the Ravens was worth $730,000.
With the huge season Forsett posted, he will command a raise. But, it probably won’t be a large one.
Justin Forsett would be an asset, and the Jets should give him a look.