Running back Dare Ogunbowale filled in for James Robinson in Week 16.
The Jacksonville Jaguars may have found another hidden gem in 2017 undrafted free agent running back Dare Ogunbowale. Ogunbowale got the starting nod in Week 16 and will start again in Week 17 as 2020 undrafted free agent James Robinson will sit out with an ankle injury, effectively ending his stellar rookie season.
Ogunbowale has seen snaps in nine games this season but wasn’t really able to showcase his skillset until this past week against the Chicago Bears.
Immediately off the bat, Ogunbowale’s agility and versatility were noticeable. He has exceptional short-area quickness, good vision, and catches out of the backfield with ease. He’s the kind of player who will make defenders miss tackles. He’s not afraid to face contact and will lower his pads to initiate contact.
Ogunbowale was originally a walk-on for the Wisconsin Badgers football team as a defensive back. He eventually converted to running back during his junior year and finished his final two seasons with 1,325 yards, 12 touchdowns, and averaged 4.9 yards per attempt. He showed tremendous leadership and was even voted as team captain his senior year.
Owen Riese from SB Nation wrote in his draft profile of Ogunbowale that he’s:
"“A jack-of-all-trades, master of none, Ogunbowale did a little bit of everything for the Badgers in 2016. He ran the ball, caught it, was the team’s primary pass protector on third downs, returned kicks, and did anything else the coaching staff asked of him.” – Owen Riese, Bucky’s 5th Quarter"
Ogunbowale has seen a similar game plan during his season with the Jaguars, especially as a key factor on passing downs.
Before signing with the Jaguars this season, Ogunbowale bounced around between the Houston Texans, Washington Redskins, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ practice squads. As a pending free agent, Jacksonville should most definitely bring him back next season. He’s so far had good success in their scheme, why not take advantage of his skillset and use him in the run game more?