Originally posted by MadDog49er:
Fans should be more concerned about James than Jenkins. While WR's take some time to develop, rookie RB's can make a big impact right away, whether in a starting role, change of pace back, third round specialist, or special teamer. Since their shelf life is smaller than a WR, the clock is ticking on these guys. Not a good sign that the team has not found a place for him so far....but, it is early in the game. Everyone should know by now my dislike of the selection, seeing a similar player like Chris Rainey selected 4 rounds later at better value....but once again, too early to be upset.
So here are my "Jamescuses". I think they are legitimate.
He didn't light up the preseason like we have seen in the past with other RB draft picks.
He also looked really bad at fielding punts, which further hurt his reputation.
However, I think the above two points are the only reasonable knocks against him. Because...
He is not going to beat out Gore.
He is not going to beat out Hunter. Hunter is an excellent running back, and almost all fans agree with that. He is coming into his second season with experience and it would have been super difficult for ANY rookie RB in this year's draft to take his place; except for perhaps some of the first round picks.
He is not going to beat out Jacobs. Jacobs role on the team is to be a super huge short yardage steam roller. LMJ does not fit that description, no matter how good he is.
He is not going to beat out Dixon. Dixon is a great special teams player, he has the ideal blend of size and speed for special teams. LMJ is too small for special teams, and he is not going to take on blockers, or be a blocker, on special teams.
The only player he could have reasonably replaced is Hunter, and Hunter is just too darn good and experienced to get replaced by a scat back like LMJ. I think he is just as legitimately a victim of the numbers game as Jenkins.
I agree that you want to see instant impact with a running back, but with James, it is either Hunter or nothing. Similar to Jenkins, where I think it is either Manningham or nothing.
We have too many good players on the team right now. That is the biggest problem with these guys seeing the field. I thought LMJ would make a bigger impact at this point. But he's not a fit with special teams, so what can we do? Maybe when Jacobs comes back, we could pull Hunter for a game, and mix it up with LMJ. I would love to see him on the field at some point.