After making a concerted effort to try and improve the running game in the offseason, the Jacksonville Jaguars have not seen sufficient production from their running backs.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have bumbled their way to a 2-5 start so far in 2016, but they have somehow played even worse than their abysmal record would indicate. Their most recent pair of losses were particularly embarrassing, with last week’s blowout to the Tennessee Titans on Thursday night serving as the prime example of the team’s ineptitude.
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The Jaguars are bad on both sides of the ball, but the offense has been the real disappointment given the modest success they had in that respect in 2015.
‘ regression has been the primary reason for the offensive struggles, but their anemic rushing attack isn’t doing the quarterback any favors. Through 7 games, the Jaguars average 72.6 yards per game on the ground, good for 30th in the NFL. Those numbers inflate how well they’ve actually run, since Bortles accounts for 145 of the team’s 508 rushing yards.
Despite being one of the worst rushing team’s in the league, the Jacksonville Jaguars aren’t too close to the bottom of Pro Football Focus’ running back rankings:
"23. Jacksonville JaguarsKey contributors: T.J. Yeldon, Chris IvoryThis group is far more talented they’ve demonstrated so far this season, but it’s hard to even put them this high at the moment. Chris Ivory looks like a shell of his former self, with the lowest elusive rating in the entire NFL this season, and three fumbles already. T.J. Yeldon was our second-highest graded rookie runner a season ago, but he too has gone backwards. His longest carry of the season is just 15 yards."
PFF is giving them the benefit of the doubt because of their supposed talent, but neither guy has inspired confidence outside a few nice runs. Neither have provided a consistent rushing presence, with Ivory’s inability to get anything going posing a particularly startling concern. Ivory was paid a considerable amount of money to come in and help bolster the Jaguars running game, even if he ultimately split carries with Yeldon. He’s failed to record more than 12 carries in a game, and he’s only managed 9 rushes in the last two weeks combined.
The Jaguars should probably be somewhere closer to 30-32 in these rankings.