He’s been one of the faces of the franchise the past few years. He’s a great story, an underdog that people love to root for. He’s an incredible voice in the locker room, a player teammates look up to. That all being said, Fred Jackson’s time as the starting runningback in Buffalo appear to be winding down.
Yesterday the Bills proved once again that their offense can run smoothly with C.J. Spiller taking nearly all the carries, as he rushed for 91 yards and had 39 yards receiving. We saw that Spiller could block someone as explosive as Cameron Wake. Most importantly we saw that Spiller is flat out more explosing than Fred Jackson is.
The Bills are at their finest when Spiller is in a rhythm, something that is difficult to accomplish when runningbacks are switching every other play. Since his first injury, Jackson has looked much slower. He’s taking away carries from the NFL leader in yards per carry, and one of the brightest young runningbacks in the league.
This does not mean that Jackson should be run out of town, or traded at the first chance. The way the NFL is today his trade value most likely isn’t huge anyways. What it means is that Spiller should be treated as the feature back, even when both are healthy. Jackson should not be getting more carries. Spiller should not be touching the ball only nine times in a game like he did last week against New England.
Jackson has another week and a half to recover from his concussion, which could be enough time for him to get cleared to play. If he does it shall be interesting to see the strategy Chan Gailey uses when facing the Indianapolis Colts.