It's time for the NY Jets to let Israel Abanikanda loose

It's time for the Jets to get their rookie running back involved
NY Jets, Israel Abanikanda
NY Jets, Israel Abanikanda / Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

The NY Jets selected former Pittsburgh running back Israel Abanikanda in the fifth round of this year's draft. Following Michael Carter's release, Abanikanda should now be in line to make his NFL debut this coming Sunday.

Abanikanda finished his final college season with 1,431 yards and 20 touchdowns. He came in second place in votes for the ACC Player of the Year and was named first-team All-American and first-team All-ACC that year as well. It is time to get Abanikanda involved in the Jets offense.

Israel Abanikanda could provide a spark to the NY Jets offense

Abanikanda showed flashes of greatness in the preseason. In his first game against the Cleveland Browns, Abanikanda finished with 27 yards and a touchdown on nine carries. He also caught one pass for five yards, showing he can be a receiving back as well.

When the Jets squared off with the Carolina Panthers in the second preseason game, Abanikanda ran for 56 yards on 12 carries and made a strong case that he could be RB2 going forward. He also picked up three receptions for 31 yards. Unfortunately, in the third preseason game, Abanikanda suffered an injury that knocked him out for a few weeks.

However, prior to his injury against the Buccaneers, Abanikanda ran for 30 yards on just four carries. He also picked up one reception for just one yard. Abanikanda was well on his way to earning a spot in the offense before his injury.

The Jets offense is about as lackluster as it comes at the moment. Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson remain the lone bright spots, but Abanikanda could provide the spark that the offense so desperately needs, and with Carter out of the picture, now is the perfect time to unleash him.

Dalvin Cook has looked better as of late, but he's struggled mightily for most of the season. Abanikanda offers big-play ability that Cook can't at this stage of his career.

It's time to give this offense a spark. It's time for the Jets to ignite this offense with Abanikanda.