Despite the multitude of new receivers on the team this year, it appears as though the Buffalo Bills‘ offense will continue to place a heavy emphasis on running the ball. At least, that’s according to the team’s new offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. When asked in a Wednesday press conference if he envisioned a 40 carry-per-game watermark between CJ Spiller and Fred Jackson, Hackett replied, “that’d be awesome. To give those two guys the ball that much, I mean, I think we’d all be excited about that.”
It’s clear that Hackett intends to run the ball often. More than that, he sees the run game as the focal point of Buffalo’s offense. “For anything that we’re doing, we always want to hand the ball to a back. We want to have the running backs carry the load. That’s always the case. When in doubt, give it to a back. That’s our motto,” Hackett said.
This philosophy might seem old fashioned in today’s passing league, but it makes perfect sense for Buffalo’s personnel. Not only do the Bills have two of the best running backs in the league between Spiller and Jackson, they also have a strong, capable O-line and a lot of uncertainty at the quarterback position. Whether the team starts EJ Manuel or Kevin Kolb in September, a strong run game is a must. Manuel is still learning the ropes of how to play quarterback in the NFL, while Kolb has proven himself to be no more than an average starter throughout the course of his career. Either way, it makes sense to feature a strong running game to hopefully make up for whatever shortcomings are present at quarterback.