Skip to comments.NFL draft: Teams are willing to wait longer to pick running backs
Posted on 03/06/2014 6:33:39 AM PST by C19fan
Trent Richardson has become the cautionary tale for NFL teams using first-round picks on running backs. The days of the first-round running back aren't dead, but 2014 could be the second straight year no backs are selected in Round 1 after at least one had been taken in the first round in the previous 50 years.
It's not that the running game is dead in the NFL, as some would have you believe. The Seattle Seahawks' offense was fueled by the run, as was that of the San Francisco 49ers. Successful teams such as the Philadelphia Eagles, New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers and Kansas City Chiefs put a greater emphasis on running last season, and it paid off dividends. Yes, passing still rules the NFL, but smart teams are going against the grain and handing off against light boxes, nickel and dime packages and faster, slimmer defenders when they are on the field.
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Also, they get banged-up really bad, making their careers shorter in duration. It’s just not worth it.
Also, the success of the running game is much more dependent on the offensive line than it is on the running back. An adequate running back with a good offensive line is much more likely to have success than a great running back with a weak offensive line. If a team wants to run, it makes more sense to invest early round picks on offensive linemen.
Who cares that they wait longer to pick players.
Answer me this. If we have to build and pay for their stadiums, then why does the NFL get tax exempt status?
The owners are billionaires and the players are millionaires. I don’t know of any other business who gets out of paying taxes.
Emmitt Smith is a perfect example. I am a Dallas Cowboys fan and love Emmitt, but on draft day, everyone was saying:
Too small for the NFL.
Too slow for the NFL.
Too fragile for the NFL.
However, while running behind an offensive line with which my fat butt could have ran for 90 yards a game, he became the all-time rushing yards leader.
I am not taking anything away from Emmitt, he was a very SMART runner. He was a lot tougher than most gave him credit. He used that line very smartly and allowed them to clear the way, but of course, he was VERY quick to get into his second gear once he cleared the box.
I still remember on draft day how everyone was screaming that it was a wasted pick.