Mayock: 2014 is a compelling class for bargain running backs

The Jets could use some new blood at the running back spot, so how does this year’s class of potential running backs project to the NFL?  D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Constitution-Journal wrote about the curious case of a Combine phenom and spoke with Mike Mayock on the subject of running backs in general.

NFL: Combine

Mayock made the point that while running backs can be very effective, they are simply not valued as high anymore due to the trends of game.  Mayock used the example of the two best players from last year and then spoke on this year’s class:

“The kid from North Carolina that went to Cincinnati (Giovani Bernard) had a phenomenal season,” Mayock said. “(Eddie) Lacy, the kid from Alabama that went to Green Bay, had a phenomenal season, so their impact on their two teams was significant.

“So, I don’t think it’s anything negative on the running back; I just think that it’s a pass-first league now so you’re seeing a lot of different draft picks getting pushed up ahead.”

Mayock believes the group of running backs for the 2014 draft, which is set for May 8-10, is talented.

“I think this running back group A) is talented, B) is deep and C) you kind of have to filter through it to see who you like because there are a lot of different flavors out there depending on what kind of offense you run,” Mayock said.

Brian Bassett, TheJetsBlog.com

We like Chris Ivory immensely but he was only intermittently productive for the Jets as his injuries didn’t allow him to be relied on for the entire season.  Bilal Powell played commendably but was in no way flashy.  The idea of bringing in Mike Goodson was savvy, but the off-the-field concerns and his injuries removed any help he could add to the team.  The Jets need to find backs who can share carries if required but offer more splash on plays outside the tackles.

While we could see the Jets making a play in free agency for a running back, this draft class will be full of options as well.  As Mayock points out, this class is great because there are players that match all needs.  Running backs like KaDeem Carey, Bishop Sankey, Jeremy Hill, Charles Sims and De’Anthony Thomas would fit the bill of the Jets needs … some might even have potential for three down work in time.

13 comments
Joan Israel
Joan Israel

Why so much negativity about the Jets' running back play last year? Powell was excellent, and dependable all year. I always felt comfortable about the running back position when he was playing. And, Who cares about 'flashy'? He gains yards, and is tough -- that's good enough for me. 

Ivory? He played very very well, and was as tough a tackle as they come. Injuries? Sure, but running backs get injured all the time. Can't be helped. Look at Adrian Peterson -- he missed games, too. 

I was wondering, too, why every one of the 'analysts/writers', including apparently you, Brian, are so dismissive of Goodson for next season? When he played -- and I admit it was not much -- he was very effective. He signed a multi-year contract with the Jets, so, unless legal matters interfere, he'll be on the team next year. He's a very solid back. If he stays healthy, he'll be a big asset for the offense.

If there are excellent running backs still on the Jets draft board and available in the 3rd - 4th rounds, of course take the guy. But, I don't think you should underrate who's already on the roster.

Jim Israel

jetsfan14
jetsfan14

I could definitely see the Jets using a 3rd round pick on a RB. My ideal scenario would have the Jets trading down in the 1st, picking up an extra 3rd round pick, using their 1st round pick on a WR, and using the extra 3rd round pick on a RB. I think Brandin Cooks might still be available towards the end of the 1st round, and if not, there are plenty of excellent receivers, like Odell Beckham Jr, who will be. They will probably cut Goodson, Ivory is injury prone, and Powell is good but not a game-changer. Ka-Deem Carey will probably be available in the 3rd, and he has a pretty high ceiling (and has good receiving skills, unlike Ivory).  A kid like Dri Archer, who is super fast, will probably be available as late as the 5th round.

Howard Silversmith
Howard Silversmith

Terrence West from Towson.... sleeper pick.  A reach in the 2nd, but would be awesome in the 3rd.  However, I doubt that he will last until the 3rd round!

dabronx
dabronx

I wonder what Chris Johnson would cost if Tennessee cut him?

Vinnie Pedi
Vinnie Pedi

The way we lost goodson all of last season broke my heart, same with the kid John Griffen, our two speedy guys were gone in a flash. Couldve been the difference of another win or two and a playoff birth.

It hurts inside when I ruin people with mike goodson on madden online, such a great receiving/outside running option, while pounding the trenches with ivory. Talk about ground and pound baby. Goodsons time is over, draft a new kid in the 2nd or 3rd and call it a day.

hazard2012
hazard2012

Jets need a versatile RB w/good hands who fits Marty's West Coast passing game.     Sanky or Seastrunk definite options here.   Doubt Jets look for a RB earlier than the 4th round, and neither Mason nor Archer will last that long.     

jerseyjet
jerseyjet

James White in the 5th could be a steal.  Passing on Tre Mason  w/ the TB pick would be a mistake (if he's there), unless MM loves Sanky or Seastrunk for some other reasons. As for the D'anthony Thomas/Dri Archer/Mckinnon types I'm all for the expieriment but I want a future feature back out of this years class.   I wouldn't be opposed to two backs being drafted this year. 

jdb4
jdb4

Dri Archer

drew2
drew2

@hazard2012  Seastrunk fits the Marty's "West Coast passing game"? Here is a pretty remarkable stat about Seastrunk: He had 0 receptions last year. NONE! In one of the greatest passing offenses in college football history, this guy didn't catch a single ball in 2013. 0 catches for 0 yards and 0 receiving TDs. Thats an average of 0.00 yards per game. They didn't even give this guy a screen! How is that possible? Google it, its actually amazing. I agree that we can use a running back with hands, but I wouldn't call Seastrunk a "definite option here".

SackDance99
SackDance99

@jerseyjet McKinnon, while definitely the wild card at RB, isn't in the DAT or Archer mold.  He's actually pretty solid at 209 lbs and 32 reps.  I haven't seen any tape on him to tell whether he has a good running style and he only had 10 catches.  He could be a nice developmental project.  He certainly has the speed and strength.  I'm not sure about talent, though.

lageman
lageman

@Johnsbodybyvi Ledo I completely agree.  I would take an RB with Jets 2nd 3rd rounder (really hope Revis doesn't get traded).

hazard2012
hazard2012

@drew2 @hazard2012  


Understand your doubts about Seastrunk as a back w/hands...your stats re last year are correct...but I was looking for possible late-round value in a dynamic back who's quick, elusive, averages 7+ YPC running ball and almost 12 YPC in limited action receiving the year before last.  He could be a steal if he can catch the ball, and that's easy enough to determine on his pro day.    I'm just saying he's worth a look, because most/all of the obvious names will probably be gone by time Idzik focuses on RB's.