The New York Jets could use another young, versatile running back to add to their depth chart. Here’s making the case to go after Jerick McKinnon if he hits free agency this offseason.
The New York Jets made a lot of mistakes last season, especially when it came to their running back situation. They didn’t use Bilal Powell enough, Elijah McGuire spent too much time on the bench, and Matt Forte was overused, to say the least.
It also didn’t help that offensive coordinator John Morton was too pass-happy on offense and well, it earned him a pink slip out of town. Hopefully, the next offensive coordinator understands how important a good ground game is and how it opens everything else up on offense. It’s rumored that quarterbacks coach Jeremy Bates might be the next man to take over as the coordinator but it hasn’t been confirmed at this point in time.
Forte will most likely not be brought back this offseason since he was ineffective last season on offense. Ideally, the Jets should add one more running back to the mix to complement Powell and McGuire and also add some much-needed depth to the positional group. This is where making moves to acquire Jerick McKinnon if he hits free agency would make a ton of sense.
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McKinnon’s stats aren’t exactly mind-blowing but he brings a lot to the table as a versatile running back that can do damage either through the ground or air. In his four-year career so far, McKinnon totaled 1,918 rushing yards, 474 rushes, and seven touchdowns. As a receiving option, he totaled 984 yards, 142 receptions, and five touchdowns.
Considering that he doesn’t have that much wear and tear bodes well for him to handle a heavier workload in stride. He’d also be an inexpensive acquisition since his numbers don’t warrant a huge free agent contract but in a “prove it” deal could put him in a situation to excel on a new team. A change of scenery might boost McKinnon’s career and on a team like the Jets could make him quite the offensive threat if used properly.
Overall, McKinnon would be worth taking a risk on by the Jets. He would bring a lot to the table as he proves he’s more than capable of handling more responsibilities on offense. Considering what he did as a relief/situational running back with the Minnesota Vikings, he could bring a nice spark to the Jets offense.