OK, after last year, we can finally forgive MJD for taking a knee at the goal line (US Presswire)
These teams that have exactly one high-end fantasy asset are always trouble where the Juggernaut Index is concerned. An individual talent like Larry Fitzgerald or Adrian Peterson can keep a franchise out of the basement, but typically not out of the high-20s.
So it goes with Maurice Jones-Drew and the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jags' offense was dreadful last year — dead-last in yardage, 29th in scoring — yet MJD still led the league in rushing by a comfortable margin. He dismissed the preseason concerns about his knee, appearing in all 16 games for Jacksonville, gaining 1,980 yards from scrimmage and scoring 11 touchdowns. He was brilliant. Heroic. Unreasonably good. Every other member of the Jaguars offense combined for 2,500 scrimmage yards and 10 TDs.
Just think about that for a moment: As a team, Jacksonville averaged only 280 total yards per week — 123.1 on the ground, 156.9 through the air. On his own, Jones-Drew accounted for 123.8 of those total yards. Defenses were focused on him to an absurd extent, but he still piled up stats at a league-best rate. He was also remarkably consistent, topping the 100-scrimmage-yards plateau in 10 of the Jags' final 11 games. Jones-Drew never let down his fantasy owners, nor did he ever let down Jacksonville fans.
Considering MJD's importance to his franchise and the mileage he's accumulated over six pro seasons, it's tough to blame him for threatening to hold out into training camp. In the NFL, players basically need to get whatever they're worth at the exact moment they're worth it. Right now, Jones-Drew has the rushing title and a good-not-great contract, signed before he'd proven himself as a 300-carry back. Thus, he's now involved in a stare-down with the team that could drag into August, if not beyond. Let's hope this thing is resolved to everyone's satisfaction before your league holds its draft.
If for some reason an MJD holdout lingers into the regular season, then Rashad Jennings will again get interesting — or at least as interesting as a handcuff on a bad team can possibly be. He's shown flashes of talent in his two seasons, averaging 5.4 yards-per-carry on 123 rush attempts. Jennings missed all of 2011, placed on injured reserve in September with a knee issue, but he's healthy now and functioning as the team's first-team back. He could get a big value bump, depending on the way Jones-Drew's situation plays out.
And so ends the semi-positive portion of our 2012 Jacksonville Jaguars fantasy preview. Hope you enjoyed it. We shall now discuss the rest of this steaming mess of an offense...
Read More »from Juggernaut Index No. 29: The Jacksonville Jaguars