Giovani Bernard didn’t win the NFL‘s Offensive Rookie of the Year Award in 2014 despite being the first running back off of the board in April’s draft. Instead, the electric Cincinnati Bengals‘ running back was largely overshadowed by a handful of fellow first-time halfbacks. Of course, it didn’t help that Bernard’s carries were seemingly cut in half by an aging yet productive BenJarvus Green-Ellis.
Well, Cincinnati’s plans for Bernard appear to be very large. In fact, rumors are currently swirling around the Bengals’ camp that say Cincinnati’s new offensive coordinator Hue Jackson is penciling Bernard in for over 300 carries next season.
Of course, that would be a huge bump in rushes for the Bengals’ second-year runner. In 2013, Bernard was unable to crack the 700 rush yards mark on a mere 170 carries. To compare, both Eddie Lacy and Le’Veon Bell managed to finish their rookie seasons with over 240 totes each despite both missing at least two games apiece.
With all of that being said, Bernard has a chance to really give the Bengals an extra boost in 2014. Jackson’s past is full of running back success, so I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if this somewhat overlooked running back caps of his second NFL campaign with a trip to the 2015 Pro Bowl.