Michael Carter could help ease some of Jaguars RB Travis Etienne workload
Travis Etienne has found ways to be productive despite the fact that the offensive line is near the cellar of the league when it comes to run-blocking win rate. In particular, the Jaguars have avoided running to the right this season because their gains on the ground on that side are minimal. That Etienne has managed to gain 684 rushing yards is a statement of his ability to find openings where there are seemingly none.
On the other hand, Etienne's averaging 1.1 yards less than last year. He's getting stopped at the line of scrimmage more often and if the Jaguars want him to remain effective the rest of the season, they should consider sharing his workload. D'Ernest Johnson, who signed a one-year deal with the Jags in the offseason, has been effective off the bench but his role in Jacksonville has been limited, getting just 12 carries for 47 yards.
Based on his performance, Johnson should be the No. 2 running back in the Jaguars' backfield. However, the coaching staff has been adamant about first-year pro Tank Bigsby getting playing time despite the fact that he's had a hard time adjusting to the NFL. Already, he's been responsible for four turnovers on 27 total touchdowns. Basically, he's caused a turnover on 14.8 percent of the plays he's gotten the ball. That's simply too much, however you look at it.
Without JaMycal Hasty, who was claimed off by the New England Patriots, the next best option is sophomore Snoop Conner, who had an underwhelming rookie campaign and is currently in the practice squad. While the adage says you're better off going with the devil you know — Bigsby or Conner in this case — the Jaguars would be better off going after Carter.