This isn't news to you folks, obviously, so I'm not going to go to much into detail here. I am curious though about your opinions on the decision. Here's the way I see it. Yes, Davenport is familiar with what we're trying to do on offense. Yes he was successful last year for the most part when called upon. And yes he was quite good in short yardage situations. I don't have the figures on me right now, but I believe he was one of the better backs in the league picking up 3rd and short situatoins. And I should also note that I understand that we have a short week here to prepare for the Jaguars, and that has to be taken into consideration when deciding on someone to be your primary ball carrier.
Still, part of me is disappointed that we're not taking a risk on somebody else. I have no idea who that guy might be, but that's my point. Nobody knew who Willie Parker was coming out of UNC. Very few people had Ryan Grant on their radars. I could go on, but you get the gist. There's a reason teams are reluctant to spend high draft choices on running backs and it's because there's lots of guys in the 5'10"-6'2" 205-230 pound range that are all have roughly the same straight line speed, and are willing to take the physical toll of being an NFL RB. Some, very few actually, have the immeasurables, like vision and instincts, to turn out great.
I know Willie Parker will be back. Not this week against Jacksonville, but probably after the BYE week. At that time he'll resume his 20-30 carry per game routine for the remainder of the season. And there will be very few people happier than me that he's back. If he can stay healthy, great, end of discussion. He's our guy. But what it he does get banged up again? I think at this point it's not unreasonable to state that the organization might be thinking about legitimate contigency plans. They might respond that they have: by signing Davenport. I suppose I just disagree about decision. It's a decision that reminds me of last year, of finding adequate solutions to big problems. To not taking chances when appropriate. After all, we know what Davenport's capable of against a tough Jags rush defense. He did start last year's playoff game against them and he got 16 carries. Problem is he only picked up 25 yards.
Again though, since I have no concrete alternatives, this is a bit of a hollow complaint. But it may just be me being anxious or apprehensive that this line of thinking is still prevalent, even though in Davenport's case, the decision makes enough sense. But with regards to other decisions that need to be made on our squad, like along the line, and perhaps with our coordinators and assistants, and even the play calling, I don't think conservative and safe is going to cut it. It's hard to let Bruce Arians go when he was part of a playoff apperance and personal bests from our franchise QB. It's hard to not give Kendall Simmons his job back next year when he's been a loyal veteran, not to mention the fact that he makes huge bucks. It's tough to take chances in the National Football League, basically.
Agree? Disagree? Or am I not even making any sense?