Will there ever be a duo like the Jaguars Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew?

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew formed a duo in the Jaguars backfield that may never be matched again in the team’s history.

The announcement on Monday by the Jacksonville Jaguars that Maurice Jones-Drew was named to the organization’s “All 25” team recognizing the 25 most important players in team history, got  me thinking about the team’s current rushing situation.

Will Jacksonville ever have a running back tandem as good or better than the former UCLA star and Fred Taylor in its backfield?

In today’s NFL, there is plenty if emphasis placed on the success of the passing game, but the Jaguars are hoping to buck the trend by continuing to make they’re rushing attack the best in the NFL

Despite their most recent off season acquisition of quarterback Nick Foles, head coach Doug Marrone and offensive coordinator John DeFilippo have made it clear that Leonard Fournette is going to be given every opportunity to be the bell cow back the team envisions for him.

But because of his injury history, you have to wonder whether this team has another running back who can pick up the slack and be just as effective. Jacksonville made some wholesale changes this off-season, adding Alfred Blue, Benny Cunningham and Thomas Rawls in free agency. Then the team went out and drafted Ryquell Armstead out of Temple in the fifth round.

It will be hard-pressed to find another combination on the current roster that is as potent as Jones-Drew and Taylor, but the current running backs offer this team versatility, something that they lacked last season.

A solid running game has been a staple of the Jaguars since Tom Coughlin was the head coach at the beginning of this team’s existence. The return of a solid running game was one of the main reasons why Jacksonville finished 10-6 and won the AFC South title in 2017. If not for Fournette and his bruising running style, the postseason may have been nothing more than a dream.

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Many like me still wonder if this team can exist with Founette as the feature back given the fact that he has not played 16 games in each of his first two years in the NFL.

For everything that Jones-Drew was, which was a bowling ball type of runner who led the NFL in rushing in 2011, Taylor was this thoroughbred and then made Jacksonville‘s offense click during his time here in North Florida. He was the type of who plotted his way through the line and used his speed to run for 11,695 yards in his career and remains the teams all-time leading rusher.

Blue told me during Jaguars OTA’s that he knows he has a chance to do something great by backing up for net in this offense. A former member of the Houston Texans the past five seasons, he also said coming to Jacksonville was a perfect fit for him because of his familiarity with Fournette and the team he had played against. And because he does have experience as a starter, he gives the coaching staff a little more insurance should Fournette go down with another injury.