CJ Spiller, leaving behind a trail of would-be tacklers (US Presswire)
After Buffalo managed to hold off Miami on Thursday night, winning a messy game that featured only one offensive touchdown, Bills running back CJ Spiller sat down for a postgame interview with NFL Network's collection of dudes who peaked in the '90s distinguished analysts. Here's the full discussion. Spiller had just gained 130 total yards on 25 touches against the 'Fins, carrying the ball a career-high 22 times.
Before the on-air crew could ask their first question, CJ offered this...
"I answered the critics tonight. I told 'em I could tote it 20-plus times."
Indeed he did. Spiller didn't mention (nor did he need to) that the only critic who actually matters is his head coach, Chan Gailey, the guy who'd prevented CJ from ever reaching the 20-carry plateau.
"I could've toted it 30 times tonight if I wanted to," Spiller told the NFL Network audience. As if workload decisions were entirely his to make.
When asked about the distribution of touches going forward, whenever Fred Jackson returns from his concussion, these were Spiller's thoughts...
"It's going to be a blessing to get Fred back, when he comes back next week. Because now when teams — when Fred's in there, he's pounding 'em and pounding 'em. Then when I get in there, I'm gonna get 'em sideline to sideline."
In other words, expect the job-share to continue in some form. Everyone in Buffalo seems to agree that Spiller needs more work — "You can never give him enough touches," Ryan Fitzpatrick has said — but no one wants to reduce Jackson's role. So here we are.
With 10 games now in the books, Spiller is one of only five NFL players to have gained over 1,000 scrimmage yards. Check his year-to-date workload compared to the other four members of the 1,000-yard club:
1. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota - 1,283 yards, 224 touches
2. Doug Martin, Tampa Bay - 1,158 yards, 196 touches
3. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle - 1,142 yards, 226 touches
4. CJ Spiller, Buffalo - 1,059 yards, 140 touches
5. Chris Johnson, Tennessee - 1,008 yards, 194 touches
That's impressive, obviously, if also kind of sickening. At his current pace, Spiller will receive only 224 touches this season, yet he'll gain nearly 1,700 yards.
If he feels OK at 20-plus carries a game, perhaps the Bills should dial up his responsibilities a bit. The fantasy community isn't likely to complain.