Brandon Jacobs: Projecting Stats & Fantasy Football Value for New York Giants RB
Wilson didn't receive a carry after his second fumble of the evening, which occurred with 13:13 to go in the third quarter and resulted in a Cowboys touchdown.
Due to a dynamic end to the 2012 season and impressive preseason, along with a serious injury to backup Andre Brown, many believe Wilson will break out in his sophomore NFL campaign.
His seven-carry, 19-yard, two-fumble effort in the loss to Dallas certainly wasn't the ideal way to begin his "breakout year."
While it's highly unlikely that Coughlin keeps Wilson on the shelf for an extended period of time, it'll be interesting to monitor how Jacobs is integrated into the Giants offense as a situational runner.
With a matchup against the Denver Broncos ahead, let's try to map out what should be expected of the bulldozing back in New York.
The 31-year-old running back won two Super Bowls as a member of Big Blue and averaged 4.49 yards on 1,078 carries over a seven-year span with the Giants from 2005 to 2011.
First and foremost, it's important to keep in mind why it's believed the Giants signed Jacobs. ESPNNewYork.com's Dan Graziano wrote the following on the expected responsibilities of New York's running backs:
The source also said one of the reasons the Giants decided to sign Jacobs was his familiarity with their offense, particularly their pass-protection schemes. That's an area in which Wilson struggled last season as a rookie and again Sunday night. The Giants believe Jacobs can help mentor Wilson in that and other areas, and possibly spell him on passing downs and maybe at the goal line.
From that, Jacobs won't be "replacing" Wilson in any way, shape or form. He'll fill in for pass-protection when Wilson is winded and potentially near the end zone.
According to Rotoworld, which piggybacked off a tweet from Ralph Vacchiano of The New York Daily News that stated Jacobs "weighed in at 265...down from his summer weight of 290," the veteran runner "admitted he's not in football shape at the moment."
Those news blurbs don't bode well for Jacobs' fantasy value, but Paul Schwartz of the New York Post reports that Wilson's legitimate backup, Da'Rel Scott, suffered an injury in practice on Wednesday:
RB Da'Rel Scott went down in practice today with knee injury. Going for tests. Guy can;t stay healthy after decent showing in opener. #nyg— Paul Schwartz (@NYPost_Schwartz) September 11, 2013
If Scott's ailment is serious, Michael Cox, a 2013 seventh-round pick, is the only other running back on New York's roster.
While it's hard to envision Jacobs instantly jumping Cox—someone who's prepared all offseason and is in much better football condition— on the depth chart, a dinged-up Scott makes the 6'4'', 265-pound bruiser much more enticing from a fantasy perspective.
Jacobs was never known for having a specialty as a pass-catcher, but he did average 9.1 yards per catch during his tenure with the Giants. He caught 15 passes for 128 yards in 2011.
Wilson snagged four passes for 34 yards and a touchdown as a rookie.
If Jacobs enters the game on passing downs, it'll likely be to serve as an extra pass-blocker. Wilson has struggled when asked to pick up blitzes and neutralize defenders before they can disrupt Eli Manning's delivery.
Jacobs doesn't possess PPR fantasy relevance, that's for sure.
Unless he simply cannot hang on to the football, Wilson will remain the Giants' unquestioned feature back.
For the time being, Jacobs will be relegated to a very minimal role in the Giants offense. However, if Scott misses time, Jacobs could find himself being utilized in more ways than just as an extra blocker on third down.
Here's a projected per-game stat line for the power back:
At this point, add Jacobs as nothing more than emergency insurance or if you don't think Wilson's fumbling issues will subside.
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