During his college career at the Washington State University, Chris Ivory played 3 seasons of football, collecting 91 rushes for 534 yards and 4 TDs. After a new coaching staff took over for the Cougars, Ivory found himself slipping down the depth chart. This would ultimately lead to off-the-field issues for Ivory, which would have him dismissed from Washington State.
Chris Ivory was overlooked in the 2010 NFL Draft, going undrafted. Ivory managed to impress New Orleans scouts enough for the Saints to sign him as an undrafted free agent. After signing with the Saints, he continued to impress during training camp and preseason. This included a 76 yard TD reception in the preseason.
Chris Ivory hasn’t really had a full season to prove himself in the NFL yet, since he has been involved in the Saints three and four back sets. During his rookie season in 2010, Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas went down with injuries. This would be Ivory’s only chance to shine. Ivory played in 12 games for the Saints this year, accumulating 137 rushes for 716 yards and 5 TD's. An injury during the Saints last regular season game would sideline him for their playoff run and ultimately place him on the PUP list for the first 6 games of the 2011 season. (More after the jump...)
Ivory’s next 2 seasons with New Orleans would once again place him in the back of their RB depth chart. In 2011, Ivory rushed 79 times for 374 yards and 1 TD. In 2012, Ivory rushed 40 times for 217 yards and 2 TD's.
Chris Ivory’s NFL rushing stats: 256 attempts, 1,307 yards, 8 TD's. Chris Ivory’s NFL receiving stats: 3 receptions, 32 yards
Following the 2012 season, Chris Ivory became a restricted free agent. The New York Jets were interested in him signing him as a restricted free agent, after letting Shonn Greene go in the offseason, but were not willing to give up their 2nd round pick. Subsequently, the Jets would wait until Day 3 of the 2013 NFL Draft to make a trade with New Orleans. New York sent their 4th round pick to New Orleans in exchange for Chris Ivory. The New York Jets would sign Chris Ivory to a 3 year deal worth $6 million, as well as $4 million in rushing yard incentives.
My Take: Chris Ivory has a lot to prove yet in the NFL, after spending 3 seasons on the bottom of New Orleans’ three and sometimes four back depth chart. Chris Ivory is one of the NFL’s best kept secrets. His ability to shake off tackles and burst through the holes with great straight line speed makes him an explosive back. Ivory has an impressive career 5.1 yards per carry average. During his rookie season, Ivory coughed up the ball 4 times which lead to 2 turnovers in 12 games. If Ivory can keep up his explosive running habits and limit his fumbles, he can become a featured back in the NFL. Chris is finally being given his chance to shine in the NFL and I think he will use it to impress everyone.