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Source: INDIANAPOLIS, IN – JANUARY 02: Jonathan Taylor #28 of the Indianapolis Colt runs the ball during the game against the Las Vegas Raiders at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 2, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

Yesterday three running backs in Josh Jacobs (Las Vegas Raiders), Saquon Barkley (New York Giants), and Tony Pollard (Dallas Cowboys) failed to reach contract extensions with their teams. Pollard signed his franchise tag, but Barkley and Jacobs have yet to do that.

With Jonathan Taylor entering the final year of his four-year rookie contract, how does his situation compare to Saquon and Jacobs? Let’s dive into it.

Saquon Barkley (26)

  • In 2018, the Giants used the second overall pick to select Barkley out of Penn State. He immediately made an impact his rookie season playing all 16 games with over 2,000 yards from scrimmage and 15 touchdowns. The next three seasons he would go on to play 28 games out of 48 games. Last season he suited up 16 times (did not play in regular season finale with playoff berth clinched). Saquon was responsible for 1,600+ yards from scrimmage (25% of team’s yards) and 10 touchdowns.
  • In his four healthy seasons, Barkley has averaged more than 4.5 yards per carry twice. When you think of the Giants offense, it literally revolves around Saquon. Daniel Jones success last season was because of Barkley being healthy. Add in the fact that Barkley had 773 college touches and 1,201 NFL touches, he’s taken around 1,974 hits.

Josh Jacobs (25)

  • In 2019, the Raiders organization drafted Jacobs out of Alabama with the 24th overall pick. Underneath Jack Del Rio and John Gruden, he was never truly given the opportunity as a three-down back. Prior to last season, Jacobs had one season with 250+ carries (273 in 2020). Last season, he was the Raiders offense with 2,053 scrimmage yards and 12 touchdowns. He also had nine games with 20+ carries compared to 15 games in the previous three seasons.
  • In four seasons, Jacobs has missed five games with three of those coming his rookie campaign. One statistic that sticks out the most is the fact that Jacobs has 60 career receptions with ZERO receiving touchdowns. When Jacobs was given 20+ carries last season, the Raiders where 6-3. In conclusion, when he was given the rock, the Raiders won.

Tony Pollard (26)

  • Unlike the previous two running backs, Pollard was selected in the fourth round by the Dallas Cowboys in the 2019 draft out of the Memphis. The major difference between Pollard and Saquon/Jacobs is that he’s been the backup running back to Ezekiel Elliott. He was primarily used as a change of pace back with his speed and agility (averaging 5+ yards per carry in three of four seasons). Last season, he was tied for the fifth most rushes 20+ yards and topped 1,000 yards for the first time in his career.
  • Through four seasons, Pollard has yet to top 200+ carries while playing 62 out of the possible 65 games. Dating back to college, he didn’t have a season where he was given the rock 100 times as a runner. The biggest question with Pollard is whether he can hold up serving as the lead back. He is the only running back out of the four that doesn’t have a lot of leverage because of his lack of experience as the guy.

Jonathan Taylor (24)

  • In 2020, the Indianapolis Colts traded back up in the second round to select Taylor with the 41st pick out of Wisconsin. He entered the NFL with a very decorated resume.
    • 2x Doak Walker Award, 2x Unanimous All-American, 2x Ameche-Dayne Running Back of the Year, 3x First-Team All- Big Ten. Rushed for 6,000+ yards with back-to-back 2,000-yard seasons.
  • JT was drafted as the backup to Marlon Mack, but after the first game of the season he ruptured his achilles leading to Taylor immediately becoming the RB1 for the Colts. He became the third Colts RB to rush for 1,000 yards since 2007 and first back-to-back 1,000-yard rusher since 2007. In his sophomore campaign, he set a franchise record for rushing yards/rushing touchdowns and tied Lenny Moore’s record for touchdowns in a season.
  • Last year was the first time in Taylor’s career where he suffered an injury. It required him to undergo offseason ankle surgery after playing in eleven games. The big question with Taylor’s future is how his body will hold up because of already taking nearly 1,800 hits between college football and the NFL. Finally, an area of improvement for Taylor has to be pass protection in order for him to stay on the field for all three downs.

To listen to Brian Noe and Jimmy Cook’s conversation comparing the running back situations, download the podcast containing the conversation below! You can always listen to the Fan Midday Show from 12pm-3pm on 93.5/107.5 The Fan, but you can watch and interact with the show by going to the 107.5 The Fan YouTube Channel.

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How Does Jonathan Taylor’s Contract Situation Compare to Other RB’s?  was originally published on 1075thefan.com