The 2018 Lions backfield started out with Kerryon Johnson and LeGarrette Blount sharing early down work, with Theo Riddick playing his passing down role. For the first five games, the split was pretty much 50/50 between Kerryon and Blount, but Kerryon was much more involved in the passing game. Even so, Kerryon only averaged 12.6 touches per game until Blount was relegated to a backup role, and just spelled Kerryon for only 5.3 attempts per game over the next four games while Kerryon’s touches went up to 17.4 per game in that span, including 4 receptions per game. Then he got hurt for the season, and that was his 2018 story.
The 17.4 touches per game is definitely worthy of an early 4th round pick in PPR drafts, but we have to prepare for CJ Anderson to assume the role Blount had in the beginning of the season. There are two reasons Blount took a backseat. One reason was that Kerryon showed enough flashes to show he was ready for the NFL in his rookie year, but the second reason that is being overlooked, is that Blount was absolutely terrible. He averaged 2.35 yards per carry up until Kerryon got hurt, and that’s not the type of production you can honestly keep calling plays for… even though they were very patient with Blount.
All CJ Anderson has to do is not play as horribly, and he can maintain a role as a close 1b on early downs, keeping Kerryon’s upside limited, especially when you consider the goal line role in major question. Before CJ was signed, we expected a run heavy offense based on Kerryon. But now, we can expect a run heavy offense that will take two guys to carry the heavy workload. When you consider CJ being an upgrade to Blount in terms of catching the ball and pass protection, it seems like he might be more involved than we would like.
Bevell’s Seahawks averaged 29.7 carries per game with a better defense to keep the run game in play, while Detroit averaged 25.2 attempts last season. We should definitely expect a bump up in the run game, but when you’re dividing that difference between two guys, we’re not going to see a huge bump up in touches.
At the beginning of the 4th round, are you taking Henry, Jacobs, Kerryon, or Montgomery? 👇👇