Sep 20, 2014; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide running back T.J. Yeldon (4) carries the ball against the Florida Gators at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports
3) Can T.J. Yeldon be a leader?
The Jacksonville Jaguars are a young team being led by young players. While veterans like Paul Posluszny and Marcedes Lewis are certainly there, it’s going to fall to the young guys to lead. They are the future and they are quickly overwhelming the teal. The Jaguars are the youngest guys around and starting a rookie running back is going to continue that trend.
Aside from Blake Bortles and Allen Robinson, leadership – especially on offense – may fall to T.J. Yeldon. He’s expected to be a major part of the offensive game plan and he’s expected to be successful on the field. It’s a heavy burden, but he’s supposed to step up to the challenge and completely tackle it.
After having a conversation with Chris Hale over at Bama Hammer (FanSided’s Alabama Crimson Tide site), it’s clear that Yeldon is the kind of humble player who can lead by example. Hale had this to say about him when asked what Yeldon’s best trait was:
"My favorite thing about Yeldon doesn’t really have much to do concerning his on the field abilities. Definitely not saying those aren’t there but his humbleness was great. Yeldon was a really quiet kid during his college days and it seemed he really just concentrated on football. Most of the kids nowadays are having fun on Twitter and even though Yeldon had an account, you never really heard anything out of him. He never had any off the field issues, either."
To me that sounds almost exactly like what the Jaguars may need out of their new running back. Bortles is expected to be the face of the franchise and he’s expected to be the guy for the Jaguars. Yeldon would be a great complement to Bortles by providing quiet, hardworking leadership for such a young team.
While I feel that I keep saying Yeldon can do everything these questions are asking, I think it’s clear based on his hard work at Alabama that Yeldon could be a leader for the Jags. Leadership comes in all different shapes and sizes and he could quietly become one of the most important people in the locker room for the Jags.
Next: Is Yeldon the 'Chosen One'?