New York Jets Should Consider Drafting Running Back in 2014 NFL Draft

By Stephen Conway
Richard Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Now that the Super Bowl is over, and the New York Jets, as well as the rest of the NFL, are transitioning to offseason mode, it is time to plan for the draft. New York has many holes to fill on the offense, and one of them is at the running back position believe it or not.

Many will argue that the running back position is not of need right now. Wide Receivers and tight ends, as well as strengthening the offensive line and establishing a quarterback of the future is what is key right now. However, in the third or fourth round, if some backs are still available who are worth picking up, it is essential for New York to do so.

New York ranked sixth in rushing last year in the NFL at just under 135 yards per game. Chris Ivory led the way with 833 yards on the year and three touchdowns. Bilal Powell rushed for 697 yards and one score. Geno Smith had the most rushing touchdowns on the team with six.

To many, this does not spark a concern. However, when you really think about it, neither Ivory nor Powell can really be considered a true feature back. Ivory played in 15 games this past season, which is by far the most games Ivory has suited up for in his four-year career. Due to his smashmouth run style, Ivory only played in six games his past two seasons before getting traded to New York. Powell, in all honesty, is not your feature back, and if you want him to be, then you have some serious issues. Powell is an excellent compliment to a feature back, but he is not your go-to, every-down back, and unfortunately, neither is Ivory.

Some people to keep on the radar for the draft are Boston College‘s Andre Williams, who was a Heisman candidate, as well as Devonta Freeman and James Wilder Jr., both out of Florida State. These are just a few backs who could still be around in the third or fourth round who are worth picking up. De’Anthony Thomas from Oregon also is an intriguing prospect, who currently sits 18th ranked among running backs entering the draft.

Stephen Conway is a New York Jets writer for Follow him on Twitter, like him on Facebook, or add him on Google.

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