Breaking down what Jordan Todman brings to the table
By Paul Newbold
The New York Jets signed another veteran running back in Jordan Todman. Here’s a look at everything he brings to the table.
On June 13, 2017, the New York Jets announced that they had signed five-year veteran running back Jordan Todman. The signing went mostly unnoticed by many fans. So, what does Todman bring to the Jets?
Todman has been in the league for a good amount of time, spending it mostly on practice squads of several teams before joining the Jets. He played his collegiate ball at the University of Connecticut before becoming a sixth round pick of the San Diego Chargers in the 2011 NFL Draft.
Todman’s career got off to a rocky start as he was cut by Chargers prior to the start of the season and was subsequently re-signed to their practice squad. Minnesota was his next stop, as the Vikings signed the running back from the Chargers practice squad in December of 2011.
With the Vikings, he didn’t fare much better. He played with them through training camp and the preseason before being cut again and then re-signed to the practice squad. In November he was signed off the Vikings practice squad by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Todman got his first real chance to play in Jacksonville, where he spent the 2013 and 2014 seasons with the club. He was used primarily to return kicks for the Jaguars, putting up 712 yards on 26 attempts in 2013 and 972 yards on 38 attempts. In the running game, Todman was used sparingly by the Jaguars posting 256 yards on 76 attempts in 2013, and 186 yards on 32 attempts the following year. He scored four touchdowns for the Jaguars including a 62-yarder in the final game of the 2014 campaign.
Despite his efforts in Jacksonville, the team let him go prior to the 2015 season and was subsequently signed by the Carolina Panthers. It was a short stay in Carolina as he was released in September after having signed a one-year deal with the club.
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Not being one to be discouraged, Todman landed in Pittsburgh. With the Steelers, he was used primarily as a special teams player throughout the regular season.
With injuries to both of the Steelers starting running backs, Todman was called on to play in his first NFL Playoff game. He ran the ball 11 times for 65 yards to help the Steelers go onto an 18-16 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.
The 2016 season found Todman fighting for a roster spot on the Indianapolis Colts. He impressed the coaching staff with his special teams play during the preseason and made the club’s 53-man roster. Todman hit his stride with the Colts, he appeared in all 16 games for the club and became a main stay on their special teams unit. His role as a running back was limited, but he did manage a 99-yard kick off return for a touchdown. In Week 9, the NFL named him the special teams player of the week.
He comes to the Jets with 531 career rushing yards on 124 attempts, three rushing touchdowns and 25 first downs to his credit. In the receiving category, Todman is credited with 314 yards on 40 receptions, two touchdowns and 12 first downs on his career. On kickoff returns for his career, Todman has produced 2,262 yards and a touchdown on 85 attempts.
Todman will need to compete for a job on the Jets special teams unit. The team could sorely use a kickoff returner, and special teams could utilize his experience after a sub par year in 2016. Todman is still just 27 years old, 5’9″ tall and tips the scales at 203 pounds. At the 2011 NFL Combine, he was timed with a 4.40 second forty yard dash.
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Todman has his work cut out for himself if he is to make the final 53-man roster this year, but he’s one to keep an eye on this summer with the Jets. He’ll need to impress Jets special team’s coordinator Brant Boyer, who is entering his second year with the team. Boyer is attempting to bring together a group of relatively young and inexperienced players. Todman’s experience could give him a head start when training camp opens. If Todman can excel this summer, it would be a welcome addition for Jets fans.