UPDATE: This was inevitable, but the Bills have officially announced that Jackson is done for the year. #FreeCJ
Our ancestors spoke of this day, this glorious, triumphant day when the professional football team in Buffalo would be forced to do something grand and innovative, and give the ball to the best player on their offense regularly. It’s dangerous football land that’s rarely been traversed by even the most creative offensive minds. But lo, the Bills and head coach Chan Gailey will be brave, because they have no choice.
They must (*pauses for dramatic effect, sips brandy, realizes it’s 9:30 a.m., sips brandy again*) start C.J. Spiller.
(*drinks all of the brandy*)
Gailey will be forced to finally and fully unshackle Spiller and make him the definitive lead back in his backfield due to Fred Jackson’s knee injury suffered yesterday during the Bills’ loss to St. Louis, a game in which Sam Bradford taught the Bills Mafia many life lessons about team construction. Earlier this morning Gailey announced that although Jackson’s most recent knee injury isn’t overly serious, it’ll still require a two-to-three week absence, meaning that his season is most likely over. I suppose there’s a chance that we could get a Jackson sighting in Week 17 in some capacity if he heals quickly, but that would be just the dumbest thing ever since at 5-8 the Bills are the longest long shot to make the playoffs, so making the remaining three games a tryout for 2013 is what a competent team would do. Which means we’re pretty much guaranteed a Jackson appearance because Gailey.
In the history of news and its distribution since the invention of the printing press, this is pretty much the best thing that’s ever happened to fantasy owners, and the timing couldn’t be better. Spiller has remained the far more efficient running back in the Bills’ backfield during his still limited usage, as yesterday he had 37 yards on seven carries, while Jackson finished with only 14 yards on nine carries. It was the ninth game Spiller has finished with more than five yards per carry, and his longest run yesterday (13 yards) was only one yard lower than Jackson’s total.
Jackson’s overall yards per carry is also significantly lower than Spiller’s, as it sits at 3.8, while the former Clemson standout is averaging 6.6. We should probably taper our expectations just a touch, because with most leagues ending their playoffs in Week 16, the Bills’ remaining schedule is a pretty mean one for shifty guys who run with footballs. In Week 15 they draw the Seahawks, and they’re ranked 10th against the run while giving up an average of 105.4 yards per game. Then the Dolphins are next, and they’re ranked ninth (102.1 YPG).
But whatevs. Against that same Dolphins defense in Week 11 Spiller had 130 yards from scrimmage (91 rushing, 39 receiving). And earlier against New England — owners of the eighth-ranked run defense — he needed only nine carries for 70 yards (7.8 YPC), and four catches to finish with 61 yards. He’ll be just fine, and you’ll be even better.
Best. Christmas gift. Ever.
And now the links part of the links post…
- Over his last seven games, Adrian Peterson is averaging 157.3 YPG. Ummm, wow. [Rotoworld]
- Oh also, yesterday Peterson became only the 12th player in NFL history with 1,600 rushing yards in a season. [ESPN stats and info]
- Danario Alexander is matchup proof. [Roto Arcade]
- Larry Fitzgerald had one catch on 11 targets. Never start this man again. [The Fake Football]