In the offseason the Atlanta Falcons made an upgrade at running back in picking up Steven Jackson from the St. Louis Rams who is a beast of a back that can catch out of the backfield, something very much needed for the offense. But in the first home game against his former team, Jackson went out with a thigh injury and has missed the last several games. Even though he turned 30 during the offseason, the tread is wearing thin, and now he is already banged up and missing games when every game counts.
Meanwhile, the Cleveland Browns decided to trade Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts (who already had Ahmad Bradshaw as a back) and in his first carry scored a touchdown. It isn’t time to throw away the season or Jackson, but having a young, dynamic back is just what this team needed because now is the time. In what is probably Tony Gonzalez’s final season, the impetus to win is now, perhaps more than ever.
The Falcons already have two very steady backs in veteran Jason Snelling and the diminutive Jacquizz Rodgers. Both guys have performed solidly in the early part of the year, but they are not Jackson. If the team had Richardson in the fold, the running game would be something to reckon with. That would especially help in the red zone, the area of the field where the Falcons seem to fail the most often and end up settling for field goals instead of touchdowns, something that doesn’t win you a lot of games in the league.