Steven Jackson signs with Pats

DJnVa

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I like it. I'm assuming he's ahead of Montee Ball on the depth chart here.
 

H78

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You're back? Ok, well let's see what you've got, because this team signed Montee Ball before they decided to sign you.

I'm not banking on much production, both because of the decline in play we saw in Atlanta from Jackson and because our line isn't particularly great blocking in the running game. Hopefully he has fresh enough legs to make up the difference, but only time will tell.
 

RedOctober3829

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You're back? Ok, well let's see what you've got, because this team signed Montee Ball before they decided to sign you.

I'm not banking on much production, both because of the decline in play we saw in Atlanta from Jackson and because our line isn't particularly great blocking in the running game. Hopefully he has fresh enough legs to make up the difference, but only time will tell.
He's definitely not signed to be "the guy". If he gets 10 carries a game that will be a lot. If this frees up Bolden to play more special teams then I'm fine with this move. He played almost 30 offensive snaps and 0 on ST which is his big role for this team.
 

SoxFanInCali

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No idea if he's got anything left, but he was a warrior for years as the only real threat on some pretty bad Rams teams. From all accounts he's a great locker room guy, as well.
 

TheoShmeo

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I would not read too much into the Montee Ball-Steven Jackson timing aspect.

There could have been all kinds of reasons for the gap. I don't think they worked out on the same day with the Pats choosing Ball over Jackson.

Also, that they are still looking for candidates after they have had Ball on the practice squad for a half a week and after having promoted Iosefa over him might tell us something about how optimistic they are about Ball. It might simply be that Iosefa knows the offense better and the Pats are just signing another guy and letting nature take its course. But if they were overwhelmed with Ball, they might not bother. Maybe.

Color me very optimistic about Jackson. A RB who was once extremely successful in the NFL and who should have fresh legs could be just what the what this team needs. I like that he has history with Josh in St. Louis, too. I like that he's coming here to get his ring, a la Dillon.

It's true that the line has to open holes and create opportunities for this to mean much. But having a beast to carry the ball can be motivating for the o-line, not that motivation by itself is sufficient.

I also wonder how this affects Iosefa, who the coaching staff and Pats players seem to really love. And who showed some potential.
 
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pappymojo

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As a reminder, Belichick had planned to draft him but then was surprised when Wilfork dropped. So he drafted WIlfork and tried very hard to trade up to take Jackson as well but couldn't get the trade done.
 

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If he's good at picking up blitz packages and catching the occasional dump-off pass without fumbling the ball I don't much care whether he's lost a couple of steps as runner. Realistically this seems like a great pickup considering the time of year and the depth of the Patriot's injuries.
 

grimshaw

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The dude must be tickling himself. He gets two games - one of which may be garbage time, and then a shot at a Super Bowl after all those shitty teams he was on.
 

joe dokes

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He's definitely not signed to be "the guy". If he gets 10 carries a game that will be a lot. If this frees up Bolden to play more special teams then I'm fine with this move. He played almost 30 offensive snaps and 0 on ST which is his big role for this team.
This has to be related to what BB saw with no Bolden on ST.
 

loshjott

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If he's good at picking up blitz packages and catching the occasional dump-off pass without fumbling the ball I don't much care whether he's lost a couple of steps as runner. Realistically this seems like a great pickup considering the time of year and the depth of the Patriot's injuries.
I'm not sure that's what they'll be asking him to do, primarily. More like the LGBT 1st and 2nd down back. Run hard north-south and don't fumble.
 

burstnbloom

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It will be really weird to see him in a Pats uniform after all these years. He's always been very reliable in the passing game so he should help there. Zero risk here with some upside.

It will also be weird to see him play without his long hair coming out of his helmet.
 

snowmanny

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Color me very optimistic about Jackson. A RB who was once extremely successful in the NFL and who should have fresh legs could be just what the what this team needs. I like that he has history with Josh in St. Louis, too. I like that he's coming here to get his ring, a la Dillon.
Don't compare him to Dillon. Dillon was more like Revis, a huge part of an entire championship season, not some guy along for the ride.
 

TheoShmeo

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Don't compare him to Dillon. Dillon was more like Revis, a huge part of an entire championship season, not some guy along for the ride.
It's a distinction without a difference regarding one aspect of the deal that I like. Having a guy join the team who is an accomplished player and who is hungry for a ring could be hugely beneficial come playoff time. That the comparison is not on all fours is not material to me.

Like Dillon, having Jackson, a RB who also apparently signed here in part because he sees it as an opportunity for a ring could be a very good thing. That they can't be compared in all respects...true but not relevant to me.
 

Section15Box113

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Like the signing. Need depth there and he should get some reps in the between-the-tackles role. 3rd down still belongs to White.

The point about history with McDaniels is an interesting one, hopefully with positive implications for comfort with - and ability to pick up - the offense. Less of a concern, perhaps, with a RB than a WR, but the familiarity has got to be helpful in getting him ready to go.

Doubt it was a primary driver of the signing, but agree that JD's point above about the ability to shift some of Bolden's focus back to ST is an under-the-radar plus.

But no one's hit on the biggest question... How much is Montee Ball going to get for the #39 jersey?
 

genoasalami

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Pretty simplistic comparison - Steven Jackson and Frank Gore are both 32. Gore shows an occasional flash. Would expect the same from Jackson.
 

RedOctober3829

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I would not read too much into the Montee Ball-Steven Jackson timing aspect.

There could have been all kinds of reasons for the gap. I don't think they worked out on the same day with the Pats choosing Ball over Jackson.

Also, that they are still looking for candidates after they have had Ball on the practice squad for a half a week and after having promoted Iosefa over him might tell us something about how optimistic they are about Ball. It might simply be that Iosefa knows the offense better and the Pats are just signing another guy and letting nature take its course. But if they were overwhelmed with Ball, they might not bother. Maybe.

Color me very optimistic about Jackson. A RB who was once extremely successful in the NFL and who should have fresh legs could be just what the what this team needs. I like that he has history with Josh in St. Louis, too. I like that he's coming here to get his ring, a la Dillon.

It's true that the line has to open holes and create opportunities for this to mean much. But having a beast to carry the ball can be motivating for the o-line, not that motivation enough is sufficient.

I also wonder how this affects Iosefa, who the coaching staff and Pats players seem to really love. And who showed some potential.
RE the Ball move: I think this has to do with a future move for next year rather than this year. Blount is a FA at the end of the season and getting Ball in here they can see what he has and if he's a viable option to replace Blount next year on the cheap.
 

( . ) ( . ) and (_!_)

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Yeah, I'm also curious what this might mean for Iosefa. Thought he showed some flashes on Sunday, though admittedly against a poor team.
Does anyone know if St Louis deployed a full back during Jackson's peak? My understanding is that running backs do have a FB/No FB preference. Curious how that could affect Iosefa's status. Though the biggest thing for Iosefa will be special teams. I don't believe White is currently a special teams contributor and Jackson won't be. They will
Not carry three non special teams running backs on the game day roster.
 

SoxFanInCali

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I don't remember the Rams ever consistently going with a 2 back offense or using a fullback except on goal-line situations. I think they tried it a little bit at the beginning of his career when Faulk was still there but it never seemed to work.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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I am probably more excited about this move than I should be, but at the very least he should be able to be minimally productive without fumbling.
 
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I'd be pretty surprised if James White hasn't earned no-brainer game day active status. Given the banged up-ness of Edelman and Amendola, we NEED his production at this point.
 

Toe Nash

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So why hasn't he been playing for anyone else?
It could be his choice to some extent.

Jackson has made millions of dollars in his career. If he didn't get the deal he wanted in the offseason, why would he sign a lesser deal and submit himself to a season of punishment at his age? Just bide your time and stay in shape and probably someone will have a need closer to the playoffs and you are guaranteed to play for a contending team. And that's what happened.
 

genoasalami

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So why hasn't he been playing for anyone else?
He's 32 years old ... running backs are a dime a dozen (until you lose them late in the season). You can almost always find a good one in the middle rounds of the draft. Why tie up money for a guy who probably does not have much left in the tank? He may be a perfect fit for a few late season games. I think all the Pats want is a veteran who knows how to pick up the blitz, catches the ball a bit, and gets a serviceable 40 to 60 yards on the ground a game.
 

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It's a distinction without a difference regarding one aspect of the deal that I like. Having a guy join the team who is an accomplished player and who is hungry for a ring could be hugely beneficial come playoff time. That the comparison is not on all fours is not material to me.

Like Dillon, having Jackson, a RB who also apparently signed here in part because he sees it as an opportunity for a ring could be a very good thing. That they can't be compared in all respects...true but not relevant to me.
Beyond the fact that they are both RBs I don't think the comparison makes any sense whatsoever. Dillon was 30 and ran for 1600+ yards in his first year with the Pats. Two years later (at Jackson's current age) he was done, with fewer career carries than Jackson has right now, and with his last two years looking a lot like Jackson's last two years in Atlanta.

Don't get me wrong, I'm fine with the signing but there's a decent chance Jackson is cooked and if he is his desire to win a ring isn't going to make a difference.
 

tims4wins

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Beyond the fact that they are both RBs I don't think the comparison makes any sense whatsoever. Dillon was 30 and ran for 1600+ yards in his first year with the Pats. Two years later (at Jackson's current age) he was done, with fewer career carries than Jackson has right now, and with his last two years looking a lot like Jackson's last two years in Atlanta.

Don't get me wrong, I'm fine with the signing but there's a decent chance Jackson is cooked and if he is his desire to win a ring isn't going to make a difference.
This nails it for me. If he can give them some 10-12 carries per game for 40-50 yards per game for the next 5 games I will be thrilled.
 

( . ) ( . ) and (_!_)

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He's 32 years old ... running backs are a dime a dozen (until you lose them late in the season). You can almost always find a good one in the middle rounds of the draft. Why tie up money for a guy who probably does not have much left in the tank? He may be a perfect fit for a few late season games. I think all the Pats want is a veteran who knows how to pick up the blitz, catches the ball a bit, and gets a serviceable 40 to 60 yards on the ground a game.
Exactly. I think everyone acknowledges that there are without a doubt available running backs off the street or practice squads that are younger and offer more explosiveness/big play ability then Jackson. But that is not really what the Pats need right now. I think I said it in the other Jackson thread from last week but right now for the Pats situation if I had to choose between steady and safe vs. upside, xplosive but unknown (blitz pickup, ball security) then I would choose steady and safe every time.
 

MarcSullivaFan

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FBO had him as 19th in rushing DVOA [last year], just slightly in negative terrority. If he's an average runner with good blitz pick up and hands, that's pretty darn good FA pickup in December. Would not be surprised at all if he was a valuable role player. With all this time off, maybe he'll have a little spring in his step. I like it. I have no interest in seeing Ball fumble in the playoffs and whiff in pass protection.
 

Erik Hanson's Hook

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So of course I went to YouTube to look at old highlights and stuff (even though I know we are not getting that same player)...and found this interesting bit. Dude used to sleep in a hyperbaric chamber. Maybe he and Brady can get together and swap some ideas.

I'm cautiously optimistic. The guy sounds like a pro's pro. And I'll add to the chorus that likes that he's sat out the whole season to this point; fresh legs, etc. Also, from watching highlights, he has been effective in the passing game in the past.

We have an interesting, if unknown, stable of backs right now.

Skip to 4:17

 

Tony C

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I'm fine with the signing -- I like how steady he should be -- but for all the 'fresh legs' arguments, he didn't really look all that good from the start of last season with the Falcons when his legs were presumably fresh then, too.
 

Reardons Beard

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I think the x-factor that will make SJax a hell of a signing despite the age is his pass catching ability. As long as he can still do that, he'll be a great match for this offense regardless of what they get out of him in the running game.
 

TheoShmeo

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Beyond the fact that they are both RBs I don't think the comparison makes any sense whatsoever. Dillon was 30 and ran for 1600+ yards in his first year with the Pats. Two years later (at Jackson's current age) he was done, with fewer career carries than Jackson has right now, and with his last two years looking a lot like Jackson's last two years in Atlanta.

Don't get me wrong, I'm fine with the signing but there's a decent chance Jackson is cooked and if he is his desire to win a ring isn't going to make a difference.
Yeah, I was making a more narrow point. That Jackson is a veteran RB joining a SB contender with a ring on his mind is, in that respect only, similar to Dillon.

Agree to disagree on whether his motivations matter. Not that I think that Jackson would not be committed if the Pats were not in the position to contend for a ring. But having a little extra incentive couldn't hurt and might help.

The Dillon comp is getting over emphasized. He was a proxy in my mind for a hungry veteran getting a chance to contribute to a title winner. There are loads of differences, I know.

I have some probably irrational hope that Jackson will end up being a real contributor. But him only getting a few carries per game would not be a surprise.
 

ALiveH

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not sure how much to read into it, but he had a couple big games in winning efforts last year 101 yds / 18 att and 81 yds / 16 att. He also ripped off a 55 yarder so he probably still has some burst.

He has only played in 2 playoff games in his career and they were in 2004, his rookie year.

$53M of lifetime earnings. He might be primarily motivated by winning at this point.
 

Hoodie Sleeves

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If my math is right - Corey Dillon retired younger than Steven Jackson is right now, so the comparison is a bit off (He was also a lot better his 2 prior years than Jackson has been).

I think Jackson is cooked as a runner - but he's always been a good blocker, and he could always catch, and those things have value, and are harder to find than guys who can run.
 

Stitch01

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Im good with the signing given the available options, but the fact this guy is out there on the street in week 15 should temper expectations. If he's a slower version of 2006 Corey Dillion, I'll be ecstatic.
 

Jnai

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I am excited.

But, what will likely happen given historical evidence is that he drops two passes, gains 6 yards on 3 or 4 carries, and retires next week.

This is a brutal league. If you aren't on team in week 16, you're probably cooked. I hope I'm wrong.
 

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I really hope he contributes meaningfully to a SB win. Admired his performance from a distance, especially when he was ridden like a mule on not very good teams. For once he can be a complementary piece and not have to cover for QB deficiencies and brain dead coaching.
 

moondog80

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Older guys sitting out 3 months and then cherry picking a situation is a model I thought would have caught on more by now.
 

BigJimEd

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Im good with the signing given the available options, but the fact this guy is out there on the street in week 15 should temper expectations. If he's a slower version of 2006 Corey Dillion, I'll be ecstatic.
I'm not exiting much but at this point it's worth a shot.
 

SumnerH

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Older guys sitting out 3 months and then cherry picking a situation is a model I thought would have caught on more by now.
I'm really surprised it doesn't happen more in baseball--Clemens kind of mastered the theory, but nobody else has followed in his footsteps.
 

lambeau

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I'm psyched. Consider that White has 17 rushing attempts so far this year--they don't send him into the line and I think don't consider him an every down back.
Jackson has slowed and probably doesn't run a 4.45 40 anymore, but at 240 he can still pound the rock. He was only good for 13 carries per game in Atlanta, but that's fine.
He was still Top 5 in yards after contact behind a horrible O- line.
The best thing is his versatility--a great pass protector, and an excellent receiver who averaged 375 receiving yards in St. Louis--had 90 receptions one year. I really think Josh is going to draw up some nice play-action routes for the playoffs.
Since being cut (Atlanta saves $3.75 M but the running game got no better with young legs), Steven became a social activist. He would like you to email the Kraft family and beg them to "allow your running back to run free." Ironic, since he is no longer able to play every down. Go to savetherunningback.org.
http://www.foxsports.com/buzzer/story/steven-jackson-save-the-running-back-030915
 

dynomite

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I'm really surprised it doesn't happen more in baseball--Clemens kind of mastered the theory, but nobody else has followed in his footsteps.
Pedro did it as well! But I agree with you.

Especially in the NFL, a guy like Steven Jackson can't realistically make it from July to January doing multiple weekly practices and taking dozens of game speed hits. But when he has to do it in 5 games over 7 weeks, it becomes far more realistic.

I wonder whether Peyton will try that next year, either splitting snaps from Week 1 or trying to sit out September and October altogether.