What will Jamaal Charles do now that Tom Jones has entered the building? Good question. Thanks. There are a couple of scenarios we can discuss. But since I’m the only one here I’ll have to discuss them with myself.
So, is Thomas Jones as good as his 1400 yards and 14 touchdowns last season indicate? Yes and no. He is great in short yardage and running between the tackles, and the Jets have great tackles. With any other team he would not have done as well, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t earn those yards. He is a physical specimen. Seeing him shirtless makes my gut quiver in fear. So it seems like he should be able to stay healthy, especially in limited(ish) duty. But at 31, an average of 300 carries a season for the last five seasons and seeming to slow down toward the end of last year, he does have a chance of getting nicked up at some point behind the Chiefs’ porous/poor offensive line.
And that gets me to the next question. Yes? Hurry up, I have to keep up with the Kardashians! Ok, ok, I’m just wondering how do you think Jones will be used? Good question. You are a smart guy! Jones won’t be the starter. Unless JC gets hurt, that is a given. But he is extremely productive in short yardage situations and he should become the goal line vulture; think 2008 LenDale White, sans gut. That no doubt will hurt JC’s fantasy production, but I believe there is a silver lining to this big dump on JC’s fantasy value. What is it? You don’t think I was about ready to tell you? Yes, but I wanted you to hurry! And this is making things go faster? Just go. Ok! Charles is a bit injury prone. He didn’t miss games, but he got banged up and had to leave a few games and toward the end of the season he was looking a little haggard, and have you ever really looked at Merle Haggard? So, do you want Charles to be on pace for 300+ carries and tearing up the league and then start missing time or do you want him to get 250 plus touches (including receptions) and have a top 15 fantasy year? Well, you can’t have the first, so stop asking.
In 2008 Chris Johnson ended up with 251 carries, 43 receptions, 1488 total yards and 10 touchdowns all while LenDale White had 200 carries and 15 touchdowns. I don’t see the duo of Jones and Charles putting up that many TD’s, but I do see a similar breakdown of touches with Charles getting a little more work in the passing game.
The Chiefs offensive line is not built for a power style of running. Just ask Larry Johnson. They really aren’t built to do much of anything well. So how does Jamaal Charles run like he does? Good question. He’s fracking awesome! Last season Razzball HQ was chomping at the bit for Haley to get Charles in the lineup because he was the only running back on the team that didn’t need a great offensive line to succeed. He is able to make space for himself. His speed and ability to catch the ball means he doesn’t have to run between the tackles.
So where do I draft young Mr. Charles? Before Jones signed with the Chiefs we had Charles at #6 overall. He has moved down the rankings, but only to #10. I’ve seen other sites moving him into RB 2 range and I just don’t see 12 other running backs performing better than him. In some ways Jones will help JC, like in the health department, and JC is just too good to be held down consistently, even when his touches are limited by Jones’ unwanted presence.