The immediate future for New Orleans Saints running back and former Heisman Trophy winner, Mark Ingram, does not look great. Ingram is listed as questionable for the Saints’ Monday night game against the Miami Dolphins, and if another player steps up and is able to run the ball as good or better than Ingram, his time in New Orleans could be limited.
Ingram did not play in Week 3 against the Arizona Cardinals, and the running back workload was delegated to trusted veteran Pierre Thomas and the dependable Darren Sproles. New Orleans also decided to give first-year running back Khiry Robinson a couple of carries in the waning minutes of the fourth quarter last week, and he looked decent. Robinson finished with 38 yards on four attempts and led the Saints in rushing on the day. This should not be overblown, obviously, as these four rushes came during garbage-time in the fourth quarter.
Still, Ingram could find his workload reduced or given away once he is done dealing with his toe injury. Should that happen I wouldn’t expect his productivity to increase, as he seems to play better with more carries. In 2009 while he was playing for the University of Alabama, Ingram rushed for over 1,600 yards on 271 carries with an average of 6.1 yards per rush.
That is pretty spectacular considering Ingram is currently maintaining a 1.8 yards per rush average this season with a current long of just eight yards. This was supposed to be a breakout year for Ingram who came into training camp and the preseason healthy for the first time.
Both Ingram and the Saints organization have denied that a trade was requested or that trading him was even a consideration. That should surprise nobody, but do not be surprised if New Orleans figures out a way to part ways with him before the trade deadline.