Will Eagles Change Running Back Approach In 2020?
The Eagles under Doug Pederson have used the running back-by-committee approach.
But it appears the approach is going out-the-window this season thanks to Miles Sanders and the Sanders 1,327 total yards he put up his rookie season.
The team averaged 28.3 carries per game last year, led by Sanders with 179 carries, followed by 119 by Jordan Howard, who is now in Miami.
So where do those 119 end up, plus the 27 that were given to Darren Sproles and Jay Ajayi?
"We are very comfortable, and excited about Miles, what he did in his rookie season, what he can do now moving forward. He's excited about the upcoming season. He's excited about getting back to training camp," Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said on Tuesday.
If the Eagles run the ball about the same amount for times in 2020 that they did in 2019 there are about 150 carries that would be mixed between Sanders, Boston Scott, Corey Clement and whoever else makes the team or is brought in to the running back room.
"Boston Scott came on at the end of the season for us and performed well," Pederson said. "Corey had a heck of a year in 2017 for us as a rookie. It’s unfortunate again, but he's put himself in a position to come back and help us through injury."
Pederson also didn't rule out bringing in another running back to compete for a job with the current group of backs.
"Right now, we're going to continue to look and see if we can add value, add depth, add competition to that room."
It’s interesting to note that the Eagles have typically broken the carries between their backs to about 35-20-15-percent.
You have to think that Sanders’ would get the bulk of the carries.
Do we see Sanders eat up the 100 of the 150 available carries with Scott and Clement or another back splitting the other 50?
That would make sense, if Sanders will be the true No. 1 back.
If Sanders gets an extra 100 carries, based off last years numbers, he would be getting 39% of the the carries, then the rest would be given to Scott and the others.
We can assume that Scott is primarily going to be used on third down, with a focus on being involved in the pass game.
And the Eagles expect big things from Scott, but also could look to some of the younger guys, like Elijiah Holifield, Mike Warren
"We have some young guys that we are excited about looking at," Pederson stated. "I'm looking forward again to getting these young guys in the building, getting them on the grass and showing us what they can do."
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