New Orleans Saints‘ running back Mark Ingram has been playing pretty well this season and as of late has seemed to hit his stride. In the Saints’ defeat to the New York Giants on Sunday, Ingram had a season high 68 yards on 13 carries. Ingram is having similar production to his rookie season, but with only three games remaining he will not meet a goal set in the off-season that the Saints hoped for him to achieve.
During the off-season the Saints said that they wanted Ingram to be a “200 carry” back this season, but it does not look like Ingram will achieve that goal this season. Through 13 games, Ingram has rushed for 420 yards on 111 carries and three touchdowns. With three games remaining in the season Ingram would need to have 89 carries to reach 200 for the season. This will be very difficult for Ingram to achieve because he would have to average about 30 carries a game from here on out.
For the season Ingram only averages about eight carries per game, so I do not see Drew Brees handing the ball off to him 30 times in any of the remaining games. Realistically, Ingram will probably carry the ball 30 times total in the last three games. Unfortunately, Ingram will not reach the 200 carry mark this season but it is not his fault at all.
The Saints are not a running football team so when the coaching staff said they wanted Ingram to be a “200 carry” back this season it was unrealistic. The Saints have shown this season that they can and will run the ball, but for the most part the Saints prefer going to the air. For this reason, Ingram has just not gotten as many touches because he is not the first option in the offense.
Ingram is not the quickest running back, but he is still a good running back nonetheless. What he lacks in speed he makes up for with his strength because Ingram is a very powerful running back. Ingram’s 3.9 yard average is respectable for a number one running back and if he got more carries his production would obviously be a lot better.
With all of that said Ingram has had a good season so far for the Saints and I think he will be an even bigger part of the offense next season as he is still a young player that is learning the ropes. The Saints are very deep at running back and it appears they are committed to Ingram as their number one running back.