Originally posted on Turn On The Jets  |  Last updated 7/1/13
Despite being the New York Jets best running back down the stretch last season, Bilal Powell is frequently the forgotten man when it comes to discussing the running back position in 2013. He isn’t a flashy player and is never going to turn heads with his natural ability but there will be a role for Powell on the 2013 Jets because of his steadiness and versatility. Last summer, it seemed to be a foregone conclusion that Joe McKnight would be the team’s third down back. LaDainian Tomlinson was retired and McKnight had the apparent skill-set to step into his role. Powell had a quiet rookie season, where his most notable contribution was fumbling into the end-zone when given an opportunity in a regular season game. However, it was Powell who came out of nowhere with an impressive training camp and beat out McKnight for the third down job, thanks to his ability to pass protect and quickly pick up the offense. The numbers were never spectacular, as Powell finished with 437 yards on 110 carries with a 4.0 yards per carry. He had 4 rushing touchdowns along with 17 receptions for 140 yards. Yet, there was a steady improvement from Powell in the Jets final stretch of games as he was given a larger opportunity. When given 12 carries against Arizona in week 13, he averaged 4.8 yards per carry for 58 total yards. The following week, with 19 carries against Jacksonville, he averaged 4.1 yards per carry for 78 yards. Then against Tennessee he averaged 4.7 yards per carry on 6 attempts and also had 2 receptions for 15 yards. Despite limited work against San Diego in week 16, he still had 4 receptions for 37 yards and then closed the season against Buffalo with 12 carries for 56 yards at 4.7 yards per carry. Powell lacks speed and big play ability. He didn’t break a play over 20 yards last year despite receiving 127 touches. Despite that, he has good vision and is a tough north/south runner who can handle inside handoffs. He runs bigger than his 5’10, 204 pound frame. Along with his inside running ability, Powell is a good enough pass protector and receiver out of the backfield to handle a 3rd down role. He isn’t an ideal fit in there because of his lack of speed but he is capable of handling it at a competent level. Powell can also protect the football. He had zero fumbles last season in his 127 touches. The value of having Powell on the roster is that he can backup both Chris Ivory and Mike Goodson. Powell can spell Ivory for a series and handle the interior runs, or step in for Goodson on 3rd downs, handle check down passes and protecting the quarterback. Yes, Joe McKnight has more speed and natural ability than Powell but McKnight hasn’t shown that he can stay healthy, pass protect and run the football inside. McKnight’s best role might be as a flex/situational player who is used in a certain package of plays as hybrid running back or slot receiver. Powell provides more stability and versatility as a pure backup running back. Considering the injury history of both Chris Ivory and Mike Goodson, it is likely the team will keep four running backs anyway and Powell makes the most sense as the primary backup.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Vlade Divac indicates DeMarcus Cousins’ agents killed other deal

Report: Julius Thomas traded to Dolphins

Joe Mixon likely to go undrafted in April?

Belichick officially updates boat’s name to ‘VII Rings’

Canseco warns humanity about robot takeover in Twitter rant

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Rick Ankiel drank vodka before pitching in 2000 NLDS

Kings throw shade at Cousins in press release announcing trade

Report: Jets tampered with Revis through private phones, secret meetings

Calipari shoots down talk of him leaving Kentucky for Pelicans

Report: Carmelo prefers trade to Clippers or Lakers

Report: Kings blowing up roster, putting Darren Collison, Ben McLemore on block

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Too much to Process: Can Simmons match the Embiid hype?

There will never be another Dirk Nowitzki

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Is the NBA All-Star Game worth saving?

Movies you can stream now to get your football fix

The Rewind: Michael Jordan's last All-Star Game

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher with 200 or more wins since 1961

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

There will never be another Dirk Nowitzki

Movies you can stream now to get your football fix

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker