Jonathan Taylor exceeding Frank Reich’s expectations

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When the Indianapolis Colts traded up in the 2020 NFL draft to select running back Jonathan Taylor, head coach Frank Reich knew they were getting a strong addition to the offense.

Even with the hype that Taylor got coming out of Wisconsin, Reich didn’t expect the second-year back to be making an impact at such a high rate. As someone who is always optimistic when it comes to the ceiling of his players, even Reich had to admit that Taylor has already exceeded expectations.

“I would say it’s fair to say he’s exceeding my expectations. I think he’s outstanding. I think he is one of the best players in the league,” Reich told the media Wednesday. “I give Chris (Ballard) a lot of credit – not that I didn’t think he was going to be great, but I think Chris saw this in him from the very start. I remember Chris telling me about him.”

Taylor started his rookie season relatively slowly, but then exploded in the second half of the campaign. He led all rookie running backs in rushing yards and was tied for the lead in rushing touchdowns.

In his second season, 23-year-old is already showing he can be among the elite rushers in the game. Taylor is second in the entire league in rushing yards (569) behind only Derrick Henry (869), who is essentially a cyborg at this point.

The connection that Chris Ballard has to Taylor’s alma mater of Wisconsin may have helped push the Colts to draft the young stud. Reich couldn’t be happier.

“Yeah, exactly. He was a little biased but he happened to be right,” Reich said of Ballard while laughing.

Taylor has gone over 100 total yards in four straight games. He was named the FedEx Ground Player of the Week for his efforts in the win over the Houston Texans in Week 6 and was nominated for the award again after his 107-yard performance against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 7.

It might be difficult to top King Henry this season given the pace he’s currently at, but Taylor is making it known that he’s among the elites when it comes to running the football.

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